AMSTERDAM/MADRID (Reuters) - Dutch police on Thursday detained a man suspected of threatening an attack on a rock concert in Rotterdam, following a tip-off from Spain.
The 22-year-old Dutch national was being questioned after being arrested around 2 a.m. during a raid in the southern province of Brabant, police said.
Spanish police had earlier tipped off Dutch authorities about the potential attack on the Maassilo concert venue in Rotterdam, where Californian band Allah-Las were due to play on Wednesday night.
The authorities did not specify how the threat had been disseminated.
But Rotterdam mayor Ahmed Aboutaleb told reporters that the information from Spain had led directly to the suspect’s arrest. The Spanish tipoff was “so accurate, that we could apprehend him” within hours, Aboutaleb said.
Authorities in Europe have become more vigilant over the risk of music venues becoming targets of terrorism since gun-and-bomb attacks on entertainment sites in Paris killed 130 people in late 2015 and a suicide bomber killed 22 at a pop concert in Manchester in May.
Neighbours of the suspect in the small town of Zevenbergen identified him to local broadcaster Omroep Brabant as Jim F., a “quiet man” who lived with his parents, who were currently on vacation.
A Spanish judicial source said there was no link between the Dutch suspect and the vehicle attacks that killed 15 people in Catalonia last week.
The Allah-Lahs concert was cancelled at around 7 p.m., shortly before doors were due to open.
In an interview with Britain’s Guardian newspaper last August, band members said they had chosen the word Allah because they were seeking a “holy-sounding” name and had not realised it might cause offence.
The Dutch National Coordinator for Security and Counterterrorism’s office said that the threat level of an attack in the Netherlands remained unchanged at “substantial”, where it has been since 2013.
Reporting by Anthony Deutsch. Additional reporting by Toby Sterling, Julien Toyer, Adrian Croft and Jesus Aguado; Editing by Robin Pomeroy and John Stonestreet