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Soldiers to stop patrolling public places in September
Weaponed soldiers in the Belgian army will no longer patrol the streets in Brussels after September. The public patrols started in January 2015 following the shootings at the Charlie Hebdo newspaper in Paris.
The November terrorist attacks in Paris of the same year and the Brussels attacks that followed in March of 2016 led to some 1,800 soldiers patrolling public places in Brussels. They could often be seen in busy Brussels streets, train and metro stations and at Brussels Airport.
The number of soldiers has gradually been decreased, and in September, operation Vigilant Guardian will come to an end. The information came from federal defence minister Philippe Goffin (MR) in answer to a parliamentary question. Soldiers will still be stationed at the nuclear power plants in Belgium, however.
Operation Vigilant Guardian has cost €206.3 million from January 2015 to present.
Photo: Nicolas Maeterlinck/BELGA