The talking continues
Verhofstadt continues meetings with top politicians in an effort to find a way out of the current political crisis.
6 December 07 - The incumbent Federal Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt (Flemish liberal) has continued his series of meetings with the country's top politicians in an effort to find a way out of the current political crisis. Belgium is still without a new federal government almost six months after the federal elections.
After having met the leaders of the four of the five largest parties in parliament on Tuesday, Mr Verhofstadt held a series of meetings with the leaders of the smaller political parties on Wednesday.
Only the far-right parties Vlaams Belang and Front National are not being sounded out by Mr Verhofstadt. The Francophone Christian democrat Joëlle Milquet, Isabelle Durant of the Francophone greens, the Flemish socialists' Caroline Gennez, Mieke Vogels of the Flemish greens, the right-leaning liberal Jean-Marie Dedecker (photo) and the Flemish nationalist Bart De Wever all met Mr Verhofstadt.
The Francophone Christian democrats, the Flemish socialists and the greens all said that they were prepared to help get urgently-needed bills through parliament such as measures to help Belgians cope with a fall in their spending power. A socialist-liberal-Christian democrat coalition?
Both the Flemish socialist Chairwoman Caroline Gennez and the Head of the Francophone Christian democrats Joëlle Milquet have not ruled out entering into a coalition made up of Christian democrats socialists and liberals from both sides of the linguistic divide.
However, Ms Gennez added that her party wouldn't be prepared to do so until the agreements already reached between the liberals and the Christian democrats had been re-negotiated.
Meanwhile, Ms Milquet said that she hoped that there would be a new government before the end of the year.
Mr De Wever refused to comment after his meeting with Mr Verhofstadt. Dedecker says "no"
The leader of the right-wing liberal party Lijst Dedecker Jean-Marie Dedecker told journalists that he is not prepared to help Mr Verhofstadt.
He added that "Verhofstadt was voted out by the electorate and I respect the voters' will".