All flights at the airport have been suspended; the air traffic control service added. Two explosions occurred in the departure hall of Brussels airport. The blasts occurred four days after the arrest in Brussels of a suspected terrorist who was part of the group of that had unleashed terror in Paris that November last that killed 130 people.

Belgian Police had been on high alert for any reprisal action. Social media showed pictures of smoke rising from the departure hall where all windows had been shattered by the blast. Passengers were seen running away down a slipway from the departure lounge.

A TV reporter at the scene said he heard two "very, very loud explosions" "I could feel the building move. There was also dust and smoke as well...I went towards where the explosion came from and there were people coming out looking very dazed and shocked."

"The thinking here is that it is some kind of terrorist attack - that hasn't been verified by any of the authorities here at the airport."

Belgian media said rail traffic to the airport was suspended. There was no immediate official comment on the cause of the attack.

The Brussels metro service was being shut down, its operator said, following a blast at a station close to the capital's European quarter.

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