Philadelphia prays for Belgium, increases security

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Police readily admit they cannot be everywhere and they were asking for the public's help. (WPVI)

As the outpouring of support for the Belgian people continues in Philadelphia, officials have increased security at soft targets as has been the case in the wake of these horrific attacks.

At the evening rush hour at SEPTA's Suburban Station Tuesday, there was a visible increase in police presence on patrol, on bikes, and with their K-9 units specially trained to sniff out bombs.

But even with that, police readily admit they cannot be everywhere and they were asking for the public's help.

"We are asking the public to be more aware and it's time for folks to see something and say something," SEPTA Police Chief Tom Nestel said.

PHOTOS: Explosions rock Brussels

Across town at the Eulogy Belgian Tavern in Old City, Belgian-American owner Michael Naessen's has been on edge.

For most of the day, he was reaching out to family, friends and business contacts in Brussels to make sure they're OK.

"Grateful that none of my friends were hurt that I know of, but it really doesn't matter, people died, people are scared, people are hurt," Naessen said.

Coupled with the attacks in Paris back in November, Naessen says this is Europe's 9/11. Like New York and Washington, he says the terrorists were trying to hit major targets.

"In Belgium, we have the headquarters for NATO, we also have the economic headquarters, so if they want to make a point, get more attention, this is how they do it. They're very desperate," Naessen said.

At Monk's Belgian Cafe, there were similar concerns for friends and contacts in Brussels, but thankfully they are OK.

Concern then turned to an international Belgian beer festival that was scheduled to take place this Saturday in Belgium, in Philadelphia and around the world.

The consensus, however, is that the festival will not be cancelled in the wake of the terror attacks.

The conversations turned to the potential for future terror attacks.

"It's really worrisome for us here in America, but I'd like to think it will bring us together with our European neighbors," Tom Kardish of Doylestown, Pa. said.

Increase security will continue at SEPTA stations, Amtrak stations, Philadelphia International Airport, and other potential targets until further notice.
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