“It was just normal procedures, nothing spectacular.“
The email threat, which was “not very concrete” according to a Danish EU diplomat, “didn’t seem very serious, but we didn’t want to take any risks.”
“It was just normal procedures, nothing spectacular. We were told by police to leave the building, around half past eight, waited around for about two hours until they swept the premises and then were allowed back in,” says Aulikki Repo, a press officer with the Finnish representation.
Their building, which shares an interior courtyard and a garage with the Danish representation to the EU, was evacuated after Danish diplomats alerted Brussels police about an email received late Sunday night, the EUobserver reports.
The official also denied any links between the email and the start of a trial in Chicago on Monday, in which a Pakistani-born doctor, Tahawwur Rana is charged with helping another Pakistani-American, David Headley, with planning a bomb attack against the Danish newspaper Jyllands Posten.
The paper has become a target for radical Muslims after it published cartoons with the prophet Mohammed.
“The threat was not linked to anything specific happening today,” the Danish diplomat said.
Denmark will also chair the rotating EU presidency in the first half of 2012, but the email did not mention this either.
Some 100 people work in the Finnish representation and another 78 people in the Danish one. Many of them were however in another location – the EU council’s Justus Lipsius building where experts and diplomats from EU member states gather every day for technical meetings.
In addition, a foreign affairs council with the Danish and Finnish ministers is also taking place there on Monday, meaning that only administrative and junior level staff had to be evacuated in the morning.