tv Today in New York NBC March 22, 2016 4:30am-5:00am EDT
as late as yesterday, even belgium interior minister saying -- some sort of attack there. >> kelly cobiella, i know you're in transit to brussels, i thank you for being on the line with us. alistair, we're getting unconfirmed reports that there have been several blasts near subway stations one by the eu building. there are unconfirmed reports, saying that these are possibly subway stations, do you have any confirmation on that? >> reporter: yes, we are seeing pictures from brussels showing subway buildings close to central brussels. at the moment, we don't know what is causing that or indeed authorities themselves unable to confirm that. that is what french media
central brussels close to subway situations. as kelly was mentioned, a foreign minister did say art arrest of abdeslam the other day that there was evidence from that terror cell that he was to be hanging with was planning to restart something, that was their expression. and possibly, that may conclude what turns out to be the suspected attack today. a large amount of weapons were raids. there were kalashnikovs at a previous raid and isis flag found as well. so, clearly, authorities were aware that this terror cell has managed to accumulate a large amount of weapons and prepared to mount an attack that do place across several areas possibly as attack. there's no indication that the attack on the brussels airport included any kind of warning or coordinated.
local time. that's about 3:00 a.m. eastern in the check-in area of the airport. the unsecured zone where people walk in from the curb. and it took place next to check-in 4 in departure hall 1. that's a fairly small area used by a number of carriers, including american airlines. widespread devastation, witness picks show parts of the ceiling, having fallen down. many bloodied, wounded people carried out of that area, debris all over the road and there were pictures of hundreds in fact running throughout the parking lots into the surrounding area. what we're now seeing all of those people coming off planes arriving in other places unable to arrive at the terminal. they're evacuated into the area surrounding the planes on the runway. and that's where they're being kept until all securities can
now, it seems like as securities are increasing terror alerts at airports throughout the area and region, that there may have been these explosions in central brussels. but we still don't have confirmation of that. what it will do is increase concerns for governments not only in western europe but the united states that terror cells are prepared to mount these kind of attacks in crowded attacks that are not secured. the departure area before you go into an airport, before -- where you just walk in from the curb. airports from europe and united states generally do not have the kind of preterminal security that you would expect to find in the middle east. so, authorities must now work out a way of trying to strike a balance between allowing this sort of free movement we've come to expect and as protecting people from attacks that seem to be carried out at anytime, dara. >> alistair, as you mentioned we
actually walking from the tarmac. and it seemed to be relatively calm. it seems they have quite a sense of order going on in the airport where they moved passengers from one area to the other. obviously, these people coming off planes right now were not part of the initial explosion that happened at the airport. so it does seem relatively calm, you can see emergency personnel running behind. more ambulances are running behind. all of the airports in brussels have been closed. there are unconfirmed reports that there have been explosions in the schuman tube station and molenbeek stations. there are unconfirmed reports but we do know there's something going on within the stations, we're getting reports, as far as security going on in brussels. what is this going to do in brussels? you now have the argt
down and the metro stations shut down. how is this going to affect what's happening in europe. london and france. >> you mentioned there's an air traffic control strike going on in france. which is obviously another issue they'll have to deal with in terms of airlines. right now, the planes have been diverted from belgium. they're not allowed to land. obviously, these planes have been on the ground before when these passengers were released. i'm sure they were held up. planes have been diverted. people are being told do not go to the airports but is this now with the unconfirmed reports of potential subway explosions. this is shaking out into more than just the airport explosions. i know we tapped on this saying potentially this isn't a terrorist attack. because you never want to jump into that and say, hey, this is exactly what's going on before it's confirmed. but this has all the hall marx
with the recent arrest of salah abdeslam. we are now getting confirmation that there have been four explosions from the brussels firemen spokesperson saying there have been four explosions. they have been explosions on different metro stations in brussels. so, obviously, this is coming out the through other parts of the city. alistair, what does this do for the feel of brussels? what does this do for security? what does this do for brussels right now? >> reporter: well, fortunately for brussels, the city has had a lot of experience with this. they've been on lockdown very recently over the christmas and new year period. remember, authorities feared there would be another terror attack carried out on the metro. they warned people not to use the system. stations were shut down, soldiers were on the streets. and it was kind of an eerie sign. no attacks and then people sort
the city in many ways almost expecting this and security services have had a lot of time to prepare for the potential of a possible attack in more than one place. and we're hearing that some of these subway stations including schuman which is next door to the european union buildings could be involved in the other reported explosions on metro. of course, this happened absolutely in the middle of rush hour. busiest time in the city's center. and as one of the busiest times of day out of the airport, which is one of europe's major airline hubs. what it will do is give authorities the headache of wondering whether they should worry about security in what they call the unsecured areas, departure zones where you walk in with your luggage before you go into security. the worst case scenario for law enforcement with luggage that
this happened in 2008 at glass gow and ll check-in airport. they are particularly vulnerable to a terror attack. we know that airplanes throughout belgium have been put on the highest level of terror alert, even those operating normally. so there will be extra checks, extra border monitoring. certainly, this will cause not only travel disruption, but will focus minds at the very highest levels throughout europe, in terms of government level, on how to maintain these borders, how to keep security. and how to keep an eye on people who are known to be members of terror cells and whose pictures are circulated as part of a kind of wanted effort. remember, abdeslam's photograph has been circulated since november. and yet, apparently, he's been in brussels all this time until his arrest a few days ago.
and intelligence services who have always warned that these sorts of things are almost impossible to keep totally across. you cannot simply prevent future terror attacks by being across every terror cell. you know, chiefs have always said this is an impossible task, and this is about managing risk more than anything. and it comes as eu leaders in brussels have been discussing issues of borders which have been under huge pressure in recent weeks and months because of the unprecedented migration from war zones and unprotected countries in the middle east and africa and afghanistan, so on. historic number of people coming through the borders because of these the european union's open border policy have been able to enter through border countries like greece and slovenia. and have been able to travel
to germany, belgium, france, and indeed london. >> and alistair, obviously border and security is going to be the absolute front and main issue now that the security forces are going to have to deal with. if you could hold on one second, we're going to kelly cobiella who is on the phone with us en route from london to brussels. kelly, what you can tell us is going on now. >> what are you hearing now? >> reporter: well, we're now hearing sand it's been reported, dara, that there have been explosions or smoke at the very least at possibly as many as three metro stations in brussels. those metros have now been closed down. they're seeing tapes across escalators. injured -- at least one injured person out by the metro station in brussels close to the eu headquarters. so is this now looking like a coordinated attack of some sort,
airport, potentially two explosions at the airport is what we're hearing and now possibly explosions in this place. pictures on social media of passengers getting off of trains -- but we have no confirmation yesterday on exactly what's happened inside. but we do know that there are reports of some sort of exhibition there and possibly people injured there. >> kelly cobiella, thank you so much for that, i know you're in transit. it's difficult to stay on the phone. we're just getting word that david cameron, the prime minister, has tweeted that he's shocked and concerned by the recent events in brussels and they'll do whatever they can to help. the ramifications, the shock waves happening from russells, obviously, this is an explosion at the airport initially which
day, just after 8:00 local time, as people were getting into the airport. into the international section of the brussels airport. apparently, there were two explosions in departure hall number one. there was shattered glass. people. we do have confirmation that one person has been killed. we do not have any more information on how many people have been wounded. we've been seeing pictures of the other thousands of people who have been at the airport that have just been moved out of the terminals, they are on the tarmac. people from certain flights landing have also been diverted out of the tarmac. at this point, flights have been cancelled from brussels. threey are trying to keep people away from the airport. also, the metro stations have been shut down. there were reports of smoke possibly coming from the schuman subway area. again, these are unconfirmed reports smoke coming from the schuman subway station which is
also the molenbeek station, three stations, that have been possibly been in some other subway smoke attack going none brussels. so this is not only going on at the airport, but this has now gone on through the city of brussels. the metro has been shut down. the level of terror has been raised. it is now at the maximum rate which is now considered a level four. they have raised the terror alert. and we are now getting more information that people have possibly been injured in the explosion in the metro explosions. and obviously, this is an ongoing situation here. we'll have more information as it comes in as to how many people have been injured. how many people have possibly died. we do have one confirmation that one person has been killed and that was in the initial explosion at the curb departure area of the brussels airport. and again this happened roughly after 8:00 on tuesday morning in brussels. thousands of people just
and alistair, again, it's later in the afternoon there for you in london. so this is midday. but travel reports, things have been shut down. what are you hearing, also, coming out, maybe possibly through social media as to what's going on in brussels? >> reporter: absolutely, you're right. it's the initial explosions, two explosions, at least authorities have confirmed. out at the airport. shortly after 8:00 this morning. so, actually, only around local time, only around an hour or so ago. and though that was not only at the height of the rush hour in the city's center but also one of the busiest times of day out from the airports. anoad we know from eyewitnesss that we've spoken to that there were multiple people injured. many of them with injuries to their legs cut by flying glass
and a security source is indicating to nbc news in the last few minutes that death toll could be higher because of the severity and the number of those injuries. but that is not confirmed by authorities. at the moment they're saying only one confirmed dead. >> alistair, if you wouldn't mind, we're going to take a quick break so nbc stations can go back to their normally scheduled programming at this moment. this is just a break for nbc news to go back to their normal programs. hello, everyone, i'm dara brown, we are continuing coverage here of the explosions that have happened at the airport in brussels. and also unconfirmed reports.
that terminal, the brussels airport is now shut down. we're going to have the latest information culling in. i do want to say good morning, everybody. at 4:45 on this tuesday morning, march 22nd, i'm michael gargiulo. >> and i'm kerry barrett. we do know there is now what appears to be a series of coordinated attacks at both the brussels airport and we know at several metro stations as well. the metro stations shut down, they saw smoke at one of those stations, it's right next to the european headquarters and all flights shut down and flights diverted as well. >> a developing story as it's happening, about 9:30 in brussels, the airport as kerry said is shut down. at least one person confirmed dead. two blasts there. an international terminal.
this is -- kerry, we've seen pictures, this is from the departure hall, you see departure signs in the brussels airport. you can see what appears to be ceiling tiles and other building materials on the ground. we've also seen people being moved out into the tarmac itself. >> indeed, one of the things we were talking about with the arrest of salah abdeslam last friday, he's one of the masterminds behind the attacks in november, one. fears they were speaking of on friday is that he may have already coordinated as a network, if you will. and had already kind of set things in motion for a series of coordinated attacks. at this point, nobody has confirmed that this is what that is. but all the hallmarks are there of this being something that he may have set in motion. i believe authorities said that they did find an isis flag at one of the locations where -- based on one of these explosions, still, a lot of questions this morning.
mentioned, michael, brussels is about five hours ahead of us. this is really kind of in the thick of their morning rush. in the morning commutes. still working on getting details on how many people are injured. and how serious those injuries may be. but smoke now in the metro stations and things being shut down and people being brought out and on to the tarmac. >> and we should point out as this happens, brussels, the capital of the european union. and also nato's headquarters is there. nato's headquarters is in a suburban area. it's not in a downtown area. the eu area is in the european parliament right in downtown brussels. you'll notice the area where the metro station is gran place. we've had reports of activity at several train stations there. they have an extensive metro system and kerry, you're reporting, it's shut down now.
wires right now, they're talking about the explosions kind of hitting at the middle of the busiest time in the airport. that serves the area that is the capital of the 28-nation union. and nato also headquartered in that area. we do know that the airport connections 23 destinations around the world and handles 23.5 million passengers. an incredibly busy airport. >> we want to concern to a special nbc news report talking to witnesses at the brussels airport. >> that's the way it was, but like i say, that's what it was, first in that area. and standing in the area the whole airport. >> jeff, if you don't mind, you said you were just traveling to rome on a regular business trip.
the airport when you arrived? did anything seem different before this explosion happened? >> no, nothing seemed to me strange today. >> so, this just started out as a normal average day of you just traveling to the airport? >> exactly. exactly. exactly. exactly. in europe, and nothing else. >> and what are doing now? what are they telling you when they'll be able to actually get you out of the airport? have they said anything about possible transportation about when you as the passengers will get some relief as to possibly going back to your homes or hotels? have they mentioned anything about that? >> well, i'm going to try to get to my car to go back home to see my family. >> jeff, i thank you so much for calling in.
account of what's going on. you did confirm there were two explosions. how far apart were the explosions if you can remember? >> very short. very short. it was like -- it was in the minutes. >> within the minutes. >> in the minutes. so one explosion and then soon after the other one. and i had the impression that the second one was more powerful than the first one. >> the second one was more powerful, did you say, than the first one? >> that's ma i think, yeah. >> and was it in the same area? >> yes, it was coming from the same area. >> coming from the same area. now if you were in the front of this check-in area, we're trying to get a sense of exactly where the explosion happened. so if you were in the front of the area, was the explosion close enough to you where you were involved with the debris coming down? or was it a little farther away
>> no, on the area where i was, on the left side, two forward so coming from the train station up, arrive al and departure hall, that's why we were affected. it was forward in the arrival even more. so it seems -- >> and, jeff, you're speaking with us now and you sound relatively calm, talking about this experience. how are other people reacting to this? you must be standing around a few other people. has there been panic, or are people -- is there a resolve? what is the mood of the people? >> people are looking like this
impossible. a lot of people were suffering in pain. and other people running away. as fast as they can from the scene. >> i'm sure it's a very frightening scene there. we're seeing pictures right now with everybody in the parking lot and out on the tarmac. where the emergency personnel basically evacuating the area. so, i'm sure this is slightly calmer than it was when this happened. and we do know this happened shortly after 8:00. how much time had you spent in the airport before this explosion happened? had you just arrived yourself? >> i just arrived. i got out of my car and straight to the check-in area and then it happened. >> and then it happened. >> but you mentioned you were on a second floor. if you're at the brussels airport, if you're up on the second floor, are you above a parking area? are you above a train station?
>> train station -- if i'm not mistaken, of course, the train station is two or three floors below than the floor i was. >> three or four floors below where you were. >> you have the arrival floor and then the train station. so, there's at least two, three floors on top of that. >> because you had parked your car, you had come in through a different area, you had come in through the front entrance? >> i was coming in through the front trans, across from the arrival and departure area. that's where i was parked, it's about two minutes', five minutes' walk. i was scared it was too late for my flight. i was not very happy there was some traffic here. i thought i was too late. >> thankfully, you are okay from this explosion. we're getting reports that several people have been injured. there was a report that one
if you wouldn't mind, could you tell us when the explosion happened, was the ground shaking, or did glass start pouring in? >> yeah, it was shaking. you really felt that -- it was moving. >> that it was moving. that the terminal was moving. >> yes. >> we are getting reports right now, don firm shgs , confirmation that there are now 13 people that have died. 35 people injured. that's coming from belgian broadcasters, and, jeff, we're very thankful that you have survived this and you're not injured and able to speak with us. if you could tell us about the mood at the airport, how is security now handling the thousands of people that have to be evacuated. what's going on there? >> well they are doing a very good job.
getting everything under control here, doing a very good job. the fire department, yes, all of them doing a very good job, yeah. >> so the emergency personnel, they were quick to evacuate everybody. and they were quick to be on hand? >> yes, yes, yes, yes, exactly. >> jeff, i thank you so much. there are now reports there have been unconfirmed issues with the metro. what does this do to travel? obviously, you fly for business, so you're one of the people that are very transient in brussels. how will this affect your travels now? >> not too much because traveling is part of my living so i have to travel otherwise i cannot survive for my business. i will travel the roads, so traveling is important for us.
thinking about that. and living and not being afraid that something is going to happen, you'll go nowhere. and afraid of those people that have done this, so i have to stand up and believe that there are still good people. >> jeff, thank you so much. i hope your words resonate with people that they will not be afraid to travel that they will stand united. thank you for your time, so appreciated and safe travels, thank you so much. right now, we're going back to nbc's alastair jamieson in the london bureau. alastair, we have reports that 13 people have been confirmed dead. 35 injured. are you hearing any more reports in london? >> reporter: yeah, that's right. we are hearing the other reports, the death toll has increased somewhat. and that's hardly a surprise
images that we saw on social media in the immediate aftermath of the attack. we're not showing those, obviously. but clearly there were some people with some fairly horrific injuries in that terminal area following the explosion, just under two hours ago. we're also seeing on social media images from these reported explosions in the subway. including people on -- who have been taken out of a subway train near to the schuman station and have had to walk around the track and be evacuated. clearly, is this a suspension of all train services people have been evacuated in the emergency and we are seeing people being treated by emergency services outside of those subway stations in the streets. so, no confirmation of what's happened on the brussels subway system itself in town.
the scene showing that something very serious is under way and that people have been injured. just to emphasize how much of an ongoing situation this is, brussels airport is tweeting to those thousands of people that we see in the pictures now, who are stuck on the air side, runway side of the airport. you come off planes or were due to be leaving on planes and have had to evacuate. and are now what is in you would hope a safe but nonetheless, they can't move out of this area. and the airport is tweeting out to say, please, stay where you are. remain calm. and we'll have more information for you. clearly, all of those people are going to have to remain there for some time until the area can be cleared and secured. and that will be many tens of thousands this coming just after 8:00 local time, one of the busiest times of day for the airport. authorities will be busy trying to secure the actual explosion site in the terminal, in the
in the meantime, all of those people stuck on the air side where the planes are will have to remain where they are. >> alastair jamieson, i want to thank you so much for reporting in london. i so appreciate you keeping us up to date on what is going on with this explosion coming out of brussels. alastair jamieson coming to us from london with the updates of what's going on in brussels. >> announcer: this is an nbc news special report. here's matt lauer. and good morning, i'm matt lauer in new york. and we're covering breaking news out of europe this morning. out of brussels, belgium to be exact. multiple explosions have been reported at the airport and in subway stops, or metro stops around that city. let's start at the airport. shortly after 8:00 a.m. brussels time, that would be 2:00 a.m. on the east coast here in the united states, there were a