Belgian police officer stabbed to death in 'terror attack' near Brussels train station

A police officer has been stabbed to death in a suspected terror attack near a train station in Brussels, officials say.

Belgium's federal prosecutor's office said two officers were targeted in the incident near Brussels North station.

A judicial official told the Associated Press there was "a suspicion of a terror attack".

The attacker was shot after the stabbing and taken to hospital, police said.

Explaining what happened, the force said one of its officers was attacked by the man before reinforcements were called.

An officer from another patrol then used his firearm to "neutralise" the attacker, it added.

According to Belgian media, the man shouted "Allahu akbar", the Arabic phrase for "God is great".

Le Soir newspaper said the dead police officer was stabbed in the neck and died in hospital.

One witness, who did not want to be identified, said he heard "five or six gun shots".

"I get off my car and see that a man is laying on the ground, he was half dead, but I could still see him moving a bit. I tried to come closer, but the police told me to go away," he said.

"It was a really frightening scene, I was really scared when I saw all this blood and that man on ground."

Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo posted a message of condolence to the family and friends of the dead officer.

"Our police officers risk their lives every day to ensure the safety of our citizens," he said. "Today's tragedy demonstrates this once again."

The attack took place at around 7.15pm local time.