The Hague, Jan 30 (IANS) The man who intruded a Dutch TV studio demanding time to air his statements Thursday night was acting alone, a senior official said Friday.
“Based on the first information I got, it was a one-man action,” Xinhua news agency quoted Minister of Security and Justice Ivo Opstelten as saying at a press conference here, adding: “Police and prosecutors are currently investigating the case.”
The man entered the building of Dutch national broadcaster NOS and threatened a security guard with a gun-like object, which turned out to be fake later. He demanded airtime, but was arrested by police soon afterward.
Police said the suspect has been identified as Tarik Z., a 19-year-old man of Tunisian descent. He is a freshman studying molecular science and technology at Delft University of Technology and does not have a criminal record.
It was still unclear what the suspect wanted to do with the airtime he asked for, as he looked confused in front of police.
NOS reporter Martijn Bink, who was at the scene at the time, said he talked to the suspect after his arrest. “He told me he was part of a hackers’ collective and had no terrorist motive,” Bink told NOS.
Due to the incident, the NOS building at the Media Park in Hilversum was evacuated. The building reopened two hours later, after which the NOS crew started broadcasting from Hilversum again.
“I understand that these images have made a frightening impression in the light of recent events in Europe,” Opstelten said.
Hilversum Mayor Pieter Broertjes said police had already taken extra security measures to protect the Media Park following the recent terror attack on the office of Charlie Hebdo magazine in Paris. However, these measures proved insufficient to prevent Thursday’s incident.
Opstelten said he has spoken with Prime Minister, Mark Rutte, and Dick Schoof, the national coordinator for security and counter-terrorism, discussing the new situation and mulling possible extra security measures.