MEP close to bomb blast in Brussels

Richard Howitt MEP with Rita Smith with the Camsight dispaly at the King Edward Centre Chatteris ANL-141010-193925009

Richard Howitt MEP with Rita Smith with the Camsight dispaly at the King Edward Centre Chatteris ANL-141010-193925009

Richard Howitt, one of the MEPs for Norfolk was in the Brussels metro station bombed on Tuesday morning by Islamic extremists.

Mr Howitt, Labour MEP for the East of England, tweeted to say he was safely inside the EU building in Brussels, which is in lockdown, but that he was at the bombed Maelbaek Metro station 30 minutes earlier, following two explosions at Brussels airport.

A total of 34 people were killed and more than 150 injured in the two bomb attacks.

He said: “I admit I was shaken, having been at the station just minutes before the bomb was detonated.

“I was actually telephoning my family to try to reassure my own children before they left for school that I was safe after the airport bombs.

“It is chilling to have been so close to such an awful event.

“This is a deliberate attack not only on the European Union, but on Belgium and on the United States too, and shows none of us can consider ourselves safe and that all of us must stand together in the fight against terrorism.

“I am proud that all of my European colleagues stayed determined to continue with our business, irrespective of politics or nationality. Our response must be to stay calm and to continue as normal, because terrorism must never defeat democracy.”

n Lynn Town Hall flew its flag at half-mast as a mark of respect to the victims.