Blast destroys front door of house in latest Rotterdam incident


An explosion damaged a house in Hellevoetsluis in the early hours of Tuesday morning in the latest in a string of attacks reported by Rotterdam police.

Nobody was injured in the blast, which destroyed the front door of the terraced house in De Zicht at around 4.15am.

Police have not said if they are linking the incident to around 50 other attacks with explosives so far this year. Hellevoetsluis is around 30km south-west of the port city but falls within the jurisdiction of Rotterdam police.

Two shootings were also reported overnight at a carwash on Stadionweg, where bullet holes were visible in the windows, and on Koninginneweg in the IJsselmonde area.

Police said nobody was injured in either shooting and forensic examinations are being carried out at the scene.

Two teenagers aged 14 and 15 who were arrested on suspicion of planting explosives in Van Speykstraat are being detained for a further 14 days while police continue to question them.

So far this year there have been 50 explosions targeting homes and business premises in Rotterdam, more than in the whole of 2022.

The city’s mayor, Ahmed Aboutaleb, says he believes the wave of violence is linked to the stricter approach to drug trafficking in Rotterdam, which together with Antwerp is Europe’s biggest gateway for the narcotics trade.

‘So many drugs are being confiscated that drug criminals are accusing each other when their shipments go missing,’ he said last month.

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