“Mr Atar’s situation is being followed closely. Repeated requests made by Belgium to the Iraqi government to consider an early release for humanitarian reasons have been fruitless so far.”
Federal Public Service Foreign Affairs — October 9, 2010
October 16 2016 — Oussama Atar, a Belgian of Moroccan descent, is almost certainly the mastermind of the Paris and Brussels attacks. Question: why was he living freely when he should have been kept in a Iraqi jail? Follow us on Twitter: @INTEL_TODAY
RELATED POST: Paris & Brussels attacks: Lies, lies and more lies
RELATED POST: Paris attacks — Belgium formally charges Yassine Atar
UPDATE (October 16 2018) — On February 23 2018, French media reported that Oussama Atar was dead. He would have been killed a few weeks earlier somewhere in the “Syria-Iraq” area.
His body was not recovered but French Intelligence services believe that he was killed.
Most questions about this case remain unanswered. Here are the few facts which are known.
Atar’s lawyer — Vincent Lurqin — had appealed to Belgian intelligence for more information. A letter from Belgian Intelligence shows that they denied knowing anything about Atar. At the same time, they refused a court order to turn over his intelligence file!
In May 2006, the CIA informed the Belgian Intelligence Services that Oussama Atar is jailed at Cropper Camp in Irak. [Keep in mind that he had been arrested in Ramadi, then under the control of al-Qaeda.] A Belgian Intelligence officer — André Jacob — was sent to Irak to interview Oussama Atar. The ‘interview’ lasted about one week.
On April 9 2008, Atar’s release from jail was decided at the highest level of the Belgian Government by the Comité Ministeriel de Renseignement et de la Sureté [CMRS].
On April 18 2008, the Belgian Foreign Ministry requests Atar’s release. In exchange, it offers promises to the Iraqi government that Atar will be monitored and not allowed to travel (no passport). Nevertheless, Atar was issued a passport.
According to Didier Reynders — who was a member of the CMRS in April 2008 — the Belgian Intelligence Services had a keen interest in the release of Oussama Atar. And why would that be?
END of UPDATE
The following document demonstrates that the Belgian government intervened to obtain the release of Ousama Atar from the Iraqi government.
Detention of Mr Oussama Atar in Iraq
09 October 2010
Pursuant to the demonstration organised today by the family of Mr Oussama Atar, a Belgian of Moroccan descent detained in Iraq, Federal Public Service Foreign Affairs reports the following:
Mr Atar’s situation is being followed closely. Repeated requests made by Belgium to the Iraqi government to consider an early release for humanitarian reasons have been fruitless so far.
Mr Atar received a consular visit this summer from our embassy in Amman. He is also being monitored closely by the International Red Cross. Pursuant in part to repeated contacts with the Iraqi authorities, we are confident that his health is being monitored appropriately.
FPS Foreign Affairs is in regular contact with Mr Atar’s family in Belgium.
UPDATE — After more than a year, Belgian media are now finally reporting that Ousama Atar is indeed the person ‘intellectually’ responsible for the Paris and Brussels attacks.
Until now, I have been one of the very rare people to say so.
“Over the past year, according to police documents, the police have been piecing together Mr. [Yassine] Atar’s role in the network. He is a cousin of the brothers Ibrahim and Khalid el-Bakraoui, who on March 22, 2016, carried out the Brussels attacks by setting off suicide bombs at an airport and in a subway station. (…)
The Belgian authorities suspect that a brother of Mr. Atar, Oussama Atar, was a leader of the Brussels network. Oussama Atar remains at large.”June 2 2017)
Obviously, the Belgian government and some Belgian politicians have a lot of explaining to do.
Why was Oussama Atar freed from a Iraqi jail under pressure from Belgian politicians? Why was he allowed to meet the Brussels bombers when they were jailed in Belgium? Why was he given a passport when the condition for his release was that he would never be allowed to travel again? Many questions. ZERO answers.
You could of course very safely speculate about some reasonable answers… But, in Belgium, no one cares. Until next time. But no worry. According to the prime minister, Belgium is NOT a failed state. All is well in the best of all worlds. — END of UPDATE
The following video clearly identifies some of the Belgian Politicians who campaigned for Mr Oussama Atar’s release.
Europe’s Most Wanted — Let’s get Started!
One Year Ago — BELGIUM — Europe’s Most Wanted
Two Years Ago — BELGIUM — Europe’s Most Wanted