About: Belgium

Coronavirus 16-06-2021

COVID-19 travel certificate rolled out in Belgium

A COVID-19 travel certificate expected to greatly simplify travel within the EU has been made available in Belgium from Wednesday (16 June), the country’s authorities confirmed.
Non-discrimination 04-05-2021

Belgium must halt police race violence and end racial profiling, says UN committee

Belgium must take action to tackle ‘police-related racial violence’ and racial profiling, according to new recommendations by a UN committee published on Monday (3 May).

Convicted Greek neo-Nazi MEP arrested in Brussels

A former leading member of Greece's neo-Nazi Golden Dawn party was arrested in Belgium on Tuesday (27 April), hours after the European Parliament lifted his immunity, Greek police said.
Health 26-04-2021

EU sues AstraZeneca over breach of COVID-19 vaccine supply contract

The European Commission said on Monday (26 April) it had launched legal action against AstraZeneca for not respecting its contract for the supply of COVID-19 vaccines and for not having a "reliable" plan to ensure timely deliveries.
Politics 14-04-2021

Belgium looks towards ‘cautious’ relaxations, with hospitality sector to open on 8 May

Belgium's Consultation Committee on Wednesday (14 April) decided to 'cautiously' loosen certain COVID-19 restrictions, including lifting a travel ban, reopening outdoor terraces for the hospitality sector and extending social bubbles.
Non-discrimination 31-03-2021

Rise of nationalist parties threatens to stall progress on race discrimination in Belgium

In 2021, Belgium will mark 40 years since the national Anti-Racism Act was passed. However, despite efforts to combat racism and ethnic discrimination, complaints of racism rose by almost 50% in 2020.
Politics 25-03-2021

Belgium enters new four-week Easter lockdown

Belgium has announced it will close schools, limit access to non-food stores and hairdressers for four weeks from Saturday, in a strict renewed lockdown designed to contain a rising third wave of COVID-19 infections.

European police pounce after cracking encrypted phone network

Police said Wednesday (10 March) they had arrested at least 80 people and carried out hundreds of raids in two European countries after shutting down an encrypted phone network used by organised crime groups.
Elections 09-03-2021

EU Parliament strips Puigdemont, two other Catalans of immunity

The European Parliament has voted to waive the immunity of Catalonia’s former regional head of government and two other separatist lawmakers, taking them a step closer to extradition to Spain, where they are charged with sedition.
Non-discrimination 09-03-2021

Brussels to rename tram, bus stops after famous women

Brussels' public transport operator marked International Women's Day by renaming 10 metro stations after famous women for one day, and pledging to permanently rename 17 bus and tram stops over the next three years to "feminise" its network.
Global Europe 05-03-2021

Foreign fighters: Belgium to repatriate children and some mothers held in Syria

Belgium will repatriate children detained in a Syrian refugee camp to meet a 2019 court order, along with some mothers on a case by case basis, Belgian Prime Minister Alexander de Croo said on Thursday (4 March).

Six EU countries warned over border restrictions

The European Commission said Tuesday (23 February) it has formally warned six EU countries that their virus-related border curbs could undermine free movement within the bloc.
Coronavirus 22-02-2021

Belgian Catholics contest 15 at-a-time COVID rule in one of world’s biggest churches

Brussels' cavernous basilica is one of the largest churches in the world but COVID-19 rules allow only 15 people at a time to attend mass there, the same limit applied to much smaller religious venues in Belgium.
Non-discrimination 19-02-2021

EU urges five countries to codify anti-racism law

The European Commission on Thursday (18 February) told five EU countries -- Belgium, Bulgaria, Finland, Poland and Sweden -- to quickly put a 2008 EU law against racism into their statutes.
Health 12-02-2021

Pandemic showcases Belgium as Europe’s Vaccine Valley

A small country with an outsize reputation in research and pharmaceuticals, Belgium has emerged with a strategic role in the world's battle against the coronavirus.

MEPs threaten to sue over European Prosecutors’ appointments

The European Parliament is requesting all documentation concerning the nominations for the European Prosecutor’s Office (EPPO) of the candidates from Belgium, Bulgaria and Portugal, where national ministers overruled the selection committee picks.
Coronavirus 29-01-2021

British COVID-19 variant may be dominant in Belgium by early March, scientists say

The new British variant of the novel coronavirus could replace almost all current strains of the virus in Belgium by the end of February, a group of scientists advising the government said in a report on Thursday (28 January).
Health 28-01-2021

EU requests inspection of Belgian vaccine plant

The European Commission has requested an inspection of a Belgian plant producing the AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine, a Belgian official said Thursday (28 January).

Belgian port lays out plans for ‘massive’ imports of green hydrogen

The Port of Antwerp has partnered with energy utility Engie and five other entities in a consortium aiming to establish a full renewable hydrogen import value chain in Belgium by the end of the decade.
Coronavirus 11-01-2021

Belgium’s coronavirus deaths hit 20,000, still among world’s highest per capita

Belgium's death toll from coronavirus infections, one of the highest per capita in the world, has breached the 20,000 mark, according to official data published on Sunday (10 January).
Coronavirus 20-12-2020

Belgium suspends UK flights, trains over virus strain

Belgium is suspending flight and train arrivals from Britain from midnight (2300 GMT) Sunday (20 December) after the UK detected a coronavirus variant suspected to be more infectious, a government official told AFP.
Languages & Culture 18-12-2020

Israel condemns EU ritual slaughter ruling

The European Court of Justice ruled Thursday (17 December) that authorities can order that animals be stunned before slaughter in a move decried by Israel and religious groups as attacking their traditions.
Politics 02-12-2020

Caught in gay ‘sex party’ in Brussels, Fidesz MEP resigns

Hungarian MEP József Szájer apologised on Tuesday (1 December) following reports that he was caught trying to flee what was described as a 25-man gay orgy last Friday that was shut down by Brussels police for breaching COVID restrictions on large gatherings.
Global Europe 27-11-2020

In European first, Iranians face trial over suspected bomb plot

An Iranian diplomat and three other Iranians go on trial in Antwerp for planning to bomb a 2018 meeting of an exiled opposition group, the first time an EU country has put an Iranian official on trial for terrorism.