One dead at sports center explosion in southern Belgium | News | DW | 26.08.2016
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One dead at sports center explosion in southern Belgium

One person has died in an explosion at a sports center in the southern Belgian town of Chimay early Friday. Four others were wounded, two of them seriously.

Het Laatse Niews quoted an unnamed rescue services spokesman saying the blast happened just after midnight and that several people were in the building at the time. Part of the building was reportedly destroyed.

"It is probably a gas explosion," a local official told the news agency Reuters, adding that there was no indication of it being a militant attack.

Belgium has been on high alert since the terrorist attacks earlier this year in the capital, Brussels. Chimay lies 120 kilometers (75 miles) south of the Belgian capital.

Local media reported the blast occurred just after midnight (22:00 GMT) at a sports centre known as "Le Chalon" in Chimay, close to the French border. Five people were reportedly still inside the building.

The spokesman, who was not named, said that a large section of the building had collapsed and that people were feared trapped in the rubble.

The cause of the explosion is currently unknown.

jbh/kl (AP, Reuters)