New battle over Flemish Interest funding

18th May 2006, Comments 0 comments

18 May 2006 (first update), BRUSSELS — Five political parties have requested the Council of State withdraw the EUR 2.1 million in public subsidies paid to the extreme-right Flemish Interest.

18 May 2006 (first update)

BRUSSELS — Five political parties have requested the Council of State withdraw the EUR 2.1 million in public subsidies paid to the extreme-right Flemish Interest.

The parties have been identified as the Flemish Socialist SP.A and left-wing Spirit parties and the Francophone Socialist PS, Liberal MR and Humanist cdH.

The Flemish Interest risks losing its funding for 12 months, news agency Belga reported on Thursday.

The complaint is based on the assumption that the Flemish Interest party has made racist statements and is in breach of the European Convention of Human Rights.

All parties had earlier backed a similar complaint that was to be lodged by multicultural youth group Kif Kaf and anti-racism organisation MRAX.

Both organisations started proceedings to lodge a complaint in November 2005, but the process became bogged down in legalities.

The shootings in Antwerp last week injected new vigour into the procedure and the complaint was finally lodged with the Council of State on Thursday.

The Flemish Interest is accused of discriminating against immigrants, describing them as criminals and claiming that they don't belong in Flanders.

Unofficially, the party is also accused of creating a racist climate that contributed to the double murder in Antwerp last week.

The Council of State must issue a ruling within six months. 

[Copyright Expatica News 2006]

Subject: Belgian news

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