King calls ministers of state

27th August 2007, Comments 0 comments

King calls ministers of state

27 August 2007

BRUSSELS – The king is not appointing a new mediator/informateur at the moment to sort out the deadlocked government formation talks. The palace announced just after 11 am today that Albert will be calling in the help of "a number of ministers of state that have particular experience with the difficulties in Belgium."

These politicians should be able to give the king more insight into how to proceed. The king and his advisers see no solutions to the impasse at the moment.

The decision is unique and evidences how difficult the present situation is. Talks with the ministers of state could lead to convening of the Crown Council. This council, comprised of the ministers of state and the ministers of the current government and chaired by the king, is convened only rarely and only when the country is facing extraordinary difficulties. The last time this happened was in 1960, in response to the independence of Congo.

For the time being it is not known who the king will invite. Belgium has 50 ministers of state, most of whom have some experience in solving these kinds of difficulties. Some names that may be considered are Jean-Luc Dehaene, (CD&V), Wilfried Martens (CD&V), Gérard Deprez (MR), Louis Tobback (SP.A), Karel Van Miert (SP.A) and Guy Spitaels (PS).

The Crown Council has only been convened on five occasions in history: 16 July 1870 at the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian War, 2 and 3 August 1914 on the occasion of the German ultimatum to Belgium, 2 May 1919 for the Treaty of Versailles, 23 March 1950 in response to the political crisis regarding the return of Leopold III after WWII, and 18 February 1960 regarding the independence of Congo.

[Copyright Expatica News 2007]

Subject: Belgian news

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