Paris: Najim Laachraoui, one of the Brussels airport bombers, has been identified by several Frenchmen held hostage by Islamic State in Syria as one of their prison guards, sources close to the investigation said today.
According to one of the sources, four French journalists kidnapped and held in Syria from 2013 to 2014 had identified a guard known as "Abou Idriss".
One of the journalists, Nicolas Henin, "has formally identified" Abou Idriss as being Najim Laachraoui, his lawyer Marie-Laure Ingouf said, confirming reports in French newspapers.
Belgian prosecutors have said Laachraoui travelled to Syria in February 2013 to join up with IS forces.
There was no further trace of the Belgian national until he was registered under a false name at the border between Austria and Hungary in September 2015.
Laachraoui, 24, was one of the two suicide bombers who struck Brussels airport on March 22, while a third attacker blew himself up at on a metro train, with the two attacks killing 31 people.
Prosecutors have also linked him to November's attacks in Paris in which 130 people died, saying his DNA was found on a suicide vest and a piece of cloth at the Bataclan concert hall where 90 people were killed.