Fifth Polish shop in Netherlands rocked by explosion

The latest explosion took place just before 2.25 am on Monday, according to the NL Times. Rob Engelaar/PAP/EPA

A Polish supermarket in Tilburg was hit by an explosion on Monday morning in what appears to be the latest in a series of attacks on Polish shops in the Netherlands.

This is the fifth in a spate of blasts in Polish stores, all owned by Kurds, over the last month, Dutch media reported.

The latest explosion took place just before 2.25 am on Monday, according to the NL Times.

"The blast started a small fire, it also broke the shutters of a warehouse adjacent to the store," the local emergency services reported. After less than an hour, the fire was extinguished, although fire-fighters remained on site for a few more hours to secure the scene. No injuries were reported.

"The property was badly damaged, the facade was destroyed," local authorities said in a statement. "The store remains closed, and a police investigation is underway."

The police have asked witnesses to contact them.

"I am very sad," Taha Mahmoed, the Iraqi Kurd owner of the store, told the Omroep Brabant regional television broadcaster.

A series of mysterious explosions in Polish shops run by Kurdish entrepreneurs began on December 8 in Aalsmeer, a town near Amsterdam.

On the same day, an explosion damaged a Polish store in Heeswijk-Dinther in North Brabant, the same province as Tilburg. Two more blasts were reported on December 9 and 12 in Beverwijk, near Amsterdam.

"The police are lazy; in Aalsmeer and Beverwijk they promised to take some action. (But) nothing happened," Mahmoed said.

All four stores attacked in 2020 were called Biedronka, but are not part of the large network of budget stores of the same name in Poland.

According to Omroep Brabant, the stores in Aalsmeer, Beverwijk and Tilburg are owned by the same family. The portal noted that the police had said the series of explosions were probably related.