Inside Molenbeek, The Small Belgian Neighborhood Dubbed 'A Hotbed of Radicalism'
Molenbeek, a neighborhood in the middle of Brussels, has now become ground zero in the search for men believed to be behind the terrorist attacks Tuesday.
Experts say it's the heart of violent Jihadi extremism in the country and a virtual breeding grounds for terrorism.
Politico reporter Tara Palmeri told INSIDE EDITION: “It's a hotbed of radicalism and it seems to be all coming from this neighborhood. Even the men who were involved with the planning of the Paris attack.”
It's the same neighborhood where last Friday police finally nabbed Europe’s public enemy Number One– Salah Abdeslam, the 26-year-old man believed to be the mastermind behind the Paris massacres.
“The others were helping him hide 400 meters from his parent's home,” Palmeri said of the four-month long hunt for Abdeslam, who was captured in the same neighborhood where he grew up.
Police actually thought they had Abdeslam cornered weeks ago in Molenbeek, but since Belgium doesn’t allow nighttime raids, he reportedly slipped away in the dark of night.
“They're not allowed to conduct a raid after 5 p.m. They have privacy laws that are different than in the United States,” Palmeri said.
The neighborhood has 90,000 residents and 40 percent of the population is unemployed within the area.
Alex Marquardt, an ABC News correspondent, told IE: “There are believed to be 5,000 Europeans fighting for ISIS and around 1,000 of them from Belgium and many of them from this neighborhood, Molenbeek.”