Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

IN THE PAPERS

Shifts in the propaganda war waged between Israelis and Palestinians

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

French MPs face quandary in pro-Palestinian rallies

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Yezid Sayigh, Senior Associate at the Carnegie Middle East Center in Beirut

Read more

#TECH 24

Mind the Gender Gap : getting more women into the tech sector

Read more

INSIDE THE AMERICAS

Bolivian children: heading to work aged 10

Read more

WEB NEWS

Israel and Hamas battle online over public opinion

Read more

FOCUS

Can Chancellor Merkel's winning streak last?

Read more

FOCUS

Hunger in a fertile land...

Read more

DEBATE

Nigeria: One Hundred Days and Counting (part 2)

Read more

  • Live: Air Algérie flight missing over northern Mali

    Read more

  • ‘Many’ French passengers on board missing Algerian plane

    Read more

  • Iraqi parliament elects moderate Kurd as president

    Read more

  • Sudanese Christian woman sentenced to death arrives in Italy

    Read more

  • No end to fighting until Israel ends Gaza blockade, Hamas says

    Read more

  • Two foreign women shot dead in western Afghanistan

    Read more

  • At least 60 killed in attack on prison convoy near Baghdad

    Read more

  • Cycling is ‘winning the war on doping,’ says expert

    Read more

  • Ceasefire agreed for Central African Republic

    Read more

  • Can Jew-kissing-Arab selfie give peace a viral chance?

    Read more

  • In pictures: Thousands march for Gaza peace in Paris

    Read more

  • France charges Swiss bank UBS with tax fraud

    Read more

  • Israel faces heightened diplomatic pressure as Gaza violence rages

    Read more

  • Botched Arizona execution takes nearly two hours

    Read more

  • Bomb attacks leave scores dead in north Nigeria

    Read more

Europe

Belgian parties say ready to form government

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2011-07-22

Eight Flemish and French-speaking Belgian parties said Friday they were willing to enter talks to form a government, in the first step toward bringing an end to the country’s political deadlock, which has left it without a government for over a year.

AFP - Eight Belgian parties are ready on talks to form a government to end a year-long political stalemate, a prominent politician charged by King Albert II to end the impasse indicated on Friday.

French-speaking Socialist Elio Di Rupo informed the monarch of the willingness of four Flemish and four French-speaking parties after holding talks with them, the palace said in a statement.
             
If successful, the talks will give the coalition a parliamentary quorum.
             
The palace statement however said the negotiations would not start immediately as Di Rupo had accepted the king's proposal for a break until the middle of next month.
             
And then the talks on "organising the points" that he had made to the parties, the statement said.
             
On the eve of the country's national day, the king had warned that the deadlock was threatening to slow the momentum of European integration.
             
The impasse has left Belgium with a dubious world record as it surpassed Iraq this year as the nation without a government for the longest time.
             
The Flemish Christian Democrats then announced late Wednesday they could join seven other parties for talks.
             
Party leader Wouter Beke said he was ready to start talks immediately on the future of Belgium's sole dual-Flemish and French administration, that of Bruxelles-Hal-Vilvorde, or "BHV".
             
His party and other Flemish parties demand the curtailment of certain electoral and judicial rights of Francophones in this area, which falls in the borders of Flanders.
             
Compensation for Francophones should be sorted out later and considered in more detail by working groups, said Beke.
             
Albert II had earlier pleaded with the feuding Flemish and French-speaking parties to resolve their differences and form a government, more than 400 days after legislative elections.
             
"Our current situation is a cause for concern among our partners and could damage our position in Europe, and even the momentum towards European integration which has already been undermined by populism and euroscepticism," the king said in a televised address.
             
A founding member of the European Union, Belgium has often been considered an example of integration in the European Union, with a Dutch-speaking community in the north and Francophones in the south.
             
But it now risks becoming a symbol of divisions in the 27-nation EU as politicians in Flanders and Wallonia struggle to strike a deal to transfer more federal powers to the regions.

 

Date created : 2011-07-22

  • BELGIUM

    Socialist leader makes last-ditch effort to save split nation

    Read more

  • BELGIUM

    Day of celebration and shame as Belgium’s deadlock breaks record

    Read more

  • BELGIUM

    Belgian king makes fresh efforts to end political limbo

    Read more

COMMENT(S)