Lives cut short: two young Americans confirmed dead following Brussels attacks
03/25/2016 / By newstarget / Comments
Lives cut short: two young Americans confirmed dead following Brussels attacks

At least two Americans are among the dead from the twin terror attacks in Brussels earlier this week, a senior U.S. official told Fox News on Friday.

(Article  by by FoxNews.com, republished from //www.foxnews.com/world/2016/03/25/at-least-2-americans-killed-in-brussels-attacks-us-official-says.html)

Authorities have not released the identities of the U.S. citizens who were among the 31 people killed in coordinated bombings Tuesday at Zaventem Airport and a metro station. But Secretary of State John Kerry acknowledged the deaths of Americans after meeting with Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel Friday.

“The United States is praying and grieving with you for the loved ones of those cruelly taken from us, including Americans, and for the many who were injured in these despicable attacks,” Kerry said after meeting Michel in Brussels.

“The United States is praying and grieving with you for the loved ones of those cruelly taken from us, including Americans, and for the many who were injured in these despicable attacks.”

A senior official said the families of two Americans had been informed of their deaths. The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, did not have further details.

Relatives of siblings Sascha and Alexander Pinczowski, Dutch nationals living in New York known to have been at the aiport, issued a statement Thursday confirming that the pair was not on a list of survivors.

“Sadly, our beloved Alexander and Sascha were not among them,” the family said in a statement Thursday. “We ask for continued prayers and privacy during this time of grieving as we await final closure.”

Because of their Dutch citizenship, it was not clear if the sister and brother were the Americans confirmed dead.

The Islamic State terror group has claimed credit for the attacks, which were carried out by as many as five bombers, three of which are believed to have died and two who are being sought. Authorities believe the bombers used suitcases packed with explosives and nails, producing blasts so devastating that identifying bodies has been difficult, and sending deadly shrapnel hurtling through the airport terminal and metro station.

About a dozen Americans were known to be injured in the attacks, and several stateside families had not been able to contact relatives that were known to be at the airport, but Friday’s development marked the first confirmation of American deaths.

The State Department said among those still unaccounted for were two “official Americans,” meaning they were U.S. government employees or their family members. That description could include both State Department employees, military employees or others, he said.

The Islamic State terror group has claimed credit for the attacks, which were carried out by as many as five bombers, three of which are believed to have died and two who are being sought. Authorities believe the bombers used suitcases packed with explosives and nails, producing blasts so devastating that identifying bodies has been difficult, and sending deadly shrapnel hurtling through the airport terminal and metro station.

About a dozen Americans were known to be injured in the attacks, and several stateside families had not been able to contact relatives that were known to be at the airport, but Friday’s development marked the first confirmation of American deaths.

The State Department said among those still unaccounted for were two “official Americans,” meaning they were U.S. government employees or their family members. That description could include both State Department employees, military employees or others, he said.

Kerry, who arrived at the still-closed airport Friday for a brief unscheduled stop on his way home from Moscow, pledged U.S. support for Belgium in the wake of the attacks, even as President Obama was criticized for appearing at a baseball game in Cuba and dancing the tango in Argentina during a previously scheduled tour earlier this week.

“We  –  all of us representing countless nationalities – have a message for those who inspired or carried out the attacks here or in Paris, or Ankara, or Tunis, or San Bernardino, or elsewhere: We will not be intimidated,” Kerry said. “We will not be deterred.  We will come back with greater resolve – with greater strength – and we will not rest until we have eliminated your nihilistic beliefs and cowardice from the face of the Earth.”

Michel thanked Kerry for his visit, calling it a powerful message of solidarity. “It is very important for us today to receive your support,” he said. He offered condolences for the American victims and vowed to step up counter-terrorism cooperation with the U.S. and others.

Kerry said he offered the prayers of the American people for “these people who have suffered inconceivable losses.”

“Those whose lives were torn apart this week were not combatants in any conflict,” the secretary said.

The Belgian Embassy, not long after Kerry’s arrival, sent a Twitter message calling his stop here an example of “the solidarity of the American people which goes right to our heart.”

Read more at: //www.foxnews.com/world/2016/03/25/at-least-2-americans-killed-in-brussels-attacks-us-official-says.html

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