May 8th, 2013
03:51 PM ET

33 arrests in Belgium diamond heist

More than 30 arrests have been made in the diamond heist last February at Brussels Airport and some of the stolen diamonds have been recovered, a spokesman for the Brussels prosecutor's office said Wednesday.

Police arrested 24 people Tuesday in Belgium, eight in Switzerland, and one in France, said Jean-Marc Meilleur, the office's spokesman. Police in Belgium raided about 40 houses in Brussels on Wednesday.

Authorities discovered some of the stolen diamonds in Switzerland, and money in Belgium, Switzerland and France, Meilleur said. Luxury cars were seized in Belgium, he said.

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Filed under: Belgium • France • Switzerland
Heavy snow snarls travel in northern Europe
Cars drive in Tuesday morning traffic on the N118 road around Paris during a heavy snow storm on France.
March 12th, 2013
09:13 AM ET

Heavy snow snarls travel in northern Europe

Today isn't the easiest day for travel in northern Europe.

Swaths of the region are in the grip of snow, ice and high winds Tuesday, causing serious disruption to road, rail and air travelers.

High-speed train operator Eurostar, which runs services linking Paris, Brussels and London, among other destinations, warned of serious disruption and urged passengers to stay at home.

February 19th, 2013
06:36 AM ET

Thieves grab $50 million in diamonds

Eight masked thieves in two vehicles stole $50 million worth of diamonds Monday at Brussels Airport, the Antwerp Diamond Centre told CNN Tuesday, citing police.

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Filed under: Belgium • Crime
September 5th, 2012
10:46 AM ET

Bomb squad gives all clear at U.S. Embassy in Belgium

A Belgian military bomb squad investigated a suspicious vehicle outside the United States Embassy in Brussels, Belgium, on Wednesday, but found "nothing abnormal," officials said.

The building was "evacuated this afternoon as a precaution while Belgian authorities investigated a suspicious vehicle in the vicinity," the embassy said on Twitter.

The incident began when a police officer noticed that the car did not have the official plate required for parking by the diplomatic mission.

The officer checked and found something suspicious in the car, Brussels police spokeswoman Ilse Van de Keere said.

She refused to say what prompted the officer's concern.

Police later said they saw wires coming from the car, but there was "nothing abnormal to report."

Technicians are continuing to investigate the vehicle, and police are trying to determine who owns it and how it came to be parked near the embassy, they said.

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Filed under: Belgium • World
Gotta Watch: Extreme ad stunts gone viral
Stuntmen participate in an unusual ad campaign in Belgium.
April 12th, 2012
10:59 AM ET

Gotta Watch: Extreme ad stunts gone viral

Every once in a while, an ad campaign is so creative or unusual that it stands out from all the other commercials we're bombarded with every day. A lot of times these cool ads go viral, such as one fun promotion in Belgium that caught our eye. You've Gotta Watch these memorable ad stunts.


Pushing buttons

This ad campaign invites passers-by to push a button to “add drama” to a town square. The mini show starts with an ambulance and a woman in lingerie and escalates from there. You’ve got to see how this ad for CNN’s sister network TNT ends.


Flying people

These unidentified flying objects puzzled onlookers in Manhattan. An unusual campaign for a movie featured flying “people.” Watch them buzz around the Statue of Liberty and other New York landmarks.


Trick shot

At an ad shoot for Gillette, tennis star Roger Federer knocked a ball off of a staffer’s head while displaying his serve. This got a lot of people wondering if it’s real. Watch the incredible shot and decide for yourself.

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Filed under: Belgium • Gotta Watch • Tennis
December 13th, 2011
11:08 AM ET

4 dead in grenade, gun attack in Belgium

[Updated at 11:08 a.m. ET] Two teenagers and a woman died in a gun and grenade attack in the Belgian city of Liege in which the attacker also died, police said in a news conference Tuesday.

The attacker had been asked to come into the police station for an interview on charges related to drug trafficking and arms possession, the police spokeswoman said.

[Updated at 9:33 a.m. ET] A grenade attack in the eastern Belgian city of Liege left at least two people dead and 64 injured Tuesday, a spokeswoman for the governor of Liege province said.

Police are searching for at least one suspect, spokeswoman Katrin Delcourt said.

A source close to the government, who asked not to be named because he was not authorized to speak to the media, told CNN that a man had thrown explosives in a city center square, Place Saint Lambert.

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Filed under: Belgium
August 19th, 2011
08:07 AM ET

Stage collapse kills 5 in Belgium

One of Europe's largest outdoor music festivals was canceled Friday after a stage collapsed during a violent storm in Belgium, killing five people and injuring 50 others, organizers said.

Belgian authorities confirmed Friday that the death toll has gone up.

"A fifth person has died," Andy Payne, spokesman for the nation's crisis center, told CNN. He said he did not know the circumstances surrounding the death.

The storm struck Thursday just hours after Pukkelpop kicked off. The scheduled three-day event was in Hasselt, east of Brussels.

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Filed under: Belgium • Europe • World
Belgian cyclist Wouter Weylandt dies after crash
Belgian cyclist Wouter Weylandt celebrates after winning the third stage of the Giro d'Italia in 2010.
May 9th, 2011
12:52 PM ET

Belgian cyclist Wouter Weylandt dies after crash

Belgian cyclist Wouter Weylandt, 26, died in a crash during a downhill portion of the Giro d'Italia event, according to, a cycling site that was broadcasting the competition.

Weylandt's death marks the first time in 16 years a cyclist has died during a major event. Italian rider Fabio Casartelli died in the 1995 Tour de France. Three other cyclists have died during the Giro event since it began.

When he crash, Weylandt was going downhill, just about 12 miles from the finish, according to, during the third stage of the 21-stage, 107-mile event. Weylandt won the same stage in last year's race.

After Monday's crash, announcers said Weylandt was laying unconscious on the pavement. He was unresponsive on the course, even after a medical team cut his helmet to try to perform CPR, according to cycling site VeloNation.

The site said Weylandt was flown to a nearby hospital, but doctors couldn't do anything. The BBC reported dcotors tried for 40 minutes to revive him.

"Things like this shouldn't happen. Absolutely sick to the stomach," British cyclist Mark Cavendish wrote on Twitter, as he immediately reacted to the news. "My thoughts are with his family. RIP Wouter Weylandt."

Weylandt joined the Leopard Trek team earlier this year.

"The team is left in a state of shock and sadness and we send all our thoughts and deepest condolences to the family and friends of Wouter," according to a statement from his team published by VeloNation.

"This is a difficult day for cycling and for our team, and we should all seek support and strength in the people close to us," it concluded.

"We lost a great team mate and a true friend today," the team 's Twitter page said. "Our thoughts are with Wouter's family and friends."

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Filed under: Belgium • Cycling • Italy • Sports
September 30th, 2010
11:32 AM ET

World War I to finally end for Germany this weekend

A French machine gun crew mans a Hotchkiss gun on August 1, 1915.

Germany and the Allies can call it even on World War I this weekend.

On Sunday - the 20th anniversary of East and West Germany unifying about a year after the Berlin Wall fell - Deutschland will make the last in a series of reparation payments that has spanned more than nine decades.

The final payment is £59.5 million, about $93.8 million
, reported London's Telegraph newspaper. Germany had to pay Belgium and France for material damages and the rest of the Allies the costs of fighting the war.

The initial tally in 1919, according to the German magazine Der Spiegel, was 96,000 tons of gold but was slashed by 40 to 60 percent (sources vary) a few years later. The debt was crippling, just as French Premier Georges Clemenceau intended.

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Filed under: Belgium • France • Germany • Italy • Poland • Romania • War
April 29th, 2010
07:25 PM ET

Belgium's lower house votes to ban burqa

Lawmakers in Belgium on Thursday approved a ban on the wearing of burqas and other Islamic garb that covers a woman's face but the bill must still be approved by the upper house of parliament before it becomes law.

If the Senate approves it, Belgium would become the first country in Europe to ban the burqa.


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Filed under: Belgium • World
April 26th, 2010
12:57 PM ET

Belgian prime minister resignation accepted

[Updated at 1:26 p.m.] The king of Belgium accepted the resignation of Belgian Prime Minister Yves Leterme Monday, the government press office told CNN.

The acceptance of his resignation signals the collapse of Leterme's government.

The prime minister offered to step down after a Flemish liberal party withdrew from a coalition government, according to news reports.


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Filed under: Belgium • World
April 23rd, 2010
12:14 PM ET

Belgian bishop resigns after admitting sexual abuse

Belgian bishop Roger Joseph Vangheluwe has resigned after admitting to sexually abusing a child, a spokesman for the Brussels bishop said Friday.


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Filed under: Belgium • Church Abuse • Vatican • World
April 22nd, 2010
08:42 AM ET

Belgian PM offers to resign amid political dispite

[Updated at 8:55 a.m.] Belgian Prime Minister Yves Leterme has offered to resign amid a political dispute, the press office of the Belgian parliament said Thursday.

The Belgian king has not yet accepted the prime minister's offer, the Royal Palace press office said. King Albert II and Leterme were meeting on Thursday afternoon, the office said.


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Filed under: Belgium • World