An explosion ripped apart a Polish supermarket in the Netherlands for the fifth time in a month, the most recent incident having taken place at Warszawa in Tilburg early Monday morning. Four shops were targeted in the five explosions, and all of them were owned by members of the same Iraqi-Kurdish family.
”The property has been seriously damaged. The facade is gone,” the Midden- en West-Brabant Security Region said in a statement. “The shopping center has been closed off by the police for further investigation.” Police wanted anyone with security camera footage from the area, or any witnesses, to contact them immediately.
There were no physical injuries reported in the latest incident. “I am very sad,” said Taha Mahmoed, the owner of the Warszawa supermarket which opened up in October. “It was a beautiful store with a large number of staff, and a successful business,” he told Omroep Brabant.
Mahmoed accused the police of dragging their feet during the investigations into the similar attacks on December 8, 9 and 12. “The police are lazy,” he said. “In Aalsmeer and Beverwijk they had already promised to take action. Nothing at all has happened.
On December 8, stores under the name Biedronka in both Aalsmeer and Heeswijk-Dinther were hit with an explosive. A Biedronka in Beverwijk was also attacked on December 9 and 12. Those three stores were not connected to the massive Biedronka chain operating in Poland.
Police acknowledged three weeks ago that they believed the bombings were linked. Mahmoed told the broadcaster he owned the location in Aalsmeer, which was shut for an extended period of time in he interest of public safety.
The Tilburg blast took place on Palletplein just before 2:25 a.m. The first emergency crews on the scene elevated the alarm to bring out more personnel, and a Grip 1 regional emergency response was declared just after 3 a.m. to coordinate all crews under a single commander.
“The explosion caused a small fire and the shutters at ground floor level of an adjacent [storage] unit have been ripped open,” the security office said. Investigators at the scene concluded at 3:15 a.m. that a second explosion was unlikely, and the fire was struck out 15 minutes later. Firefighters remained on scene over the next three hours to prevent the fire from flaring up again.
“It was going very well. I do not understand. A bomb in the Netherlands? How is that possible?” Mahmoed stated. “This is an orderly country.”