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Here's why Brussels residents on lockdown were tweeting pictures of their cats last night

It’s what happens when police ask for “radio silence”.

BELGIAN POLICE CARRIED out several anti-terror raids across the country last night as Brussels remains on high-alert of a terror attack.

Under circumstances like this the public is often asked to refrain from publishing pictures of police operations that could help those being targeted.

Federal police tweeted last night asking residents for “radio silence” in relation to the raids on social media.

The country’s defence minister echoed this:

While the country is facing an immediate threat of a devastating terror attack, with Belgian military on every corner of Brussels, the public were still able to react with a bit of humour.

Instead of tweeting pictures of Belgian police…

Belgium France Attacks Belgian police on Saturday afternoon. Source: Associated Press

… they tweeted pictures of cats.

It’s believed to have been sparked by this tweet by cameraman for the Dutch television channel NOS, Hugo Janssen.

What followed was more cats.

A lot more cats.

Cats.

Belgian authorities overseeing the crisis were only too happy.

Brussels has begun a third consecutive day in lockdown after last night’s raids failed to find key Paris attacks suspect Salah Abdeslam.

In an unprecedented security operation for the European capital, schools, universities and the metro are shut in the face of what Prime Minister Charles Michel called a “serious and imminent” threat of attacks similar to those that killed 130 people in France.

Belgian police on Sunday carried out 19 raids in Brussels and three in the industrial town of Charleroi, detaining 16 people, prosecutors said.

The driver of a car was injured after police fired two shots when the vehicle drove at officers.

“Salah Abdeslam was not caught during the raids,” federal prosecutor spokesman Eric Van Der Sypt told reporters just after midnight, meaning Europe’s most wanted man remains at large.

Additional reporting © AFP 2015

Read: The Paris attackers – here’s what we know so far >

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Nicky Ryan

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