In Syria President Assad's alawite minority is in power. The alawites are supported by the Shi'ites of Iran. The suspect held responsible for the attack on the Anderlecht mosque said he decided to take action two weeks ago and wanted to frighten the Shi'ites in Belgium who he holds responsible for the situation in Syria. The mosque's imam, a 46-year-old man, died in the fire.
Investigators are examining whether or not to charge the suspect with terrorism offences.