Expatica news

Belgian news in brief, 5 December 2005

Restaurants smoke free in 2007

Starting from 2007, restaurants will be smoke free in Belgium, but cafés and bars will escape the ban unveiled by Health Minister Rudy Demotte. The smoke-free workplace will come into effect on 1 January 2006, but restaurants will not come under that legislation. However, because a large number of people work in the catering industry, Demotte is keen to protect them from the effects of smoking as well. Moreover, a majority of the public is in favour of a general ban on smoking in restaurants. Cafés and pubs will be exempt from the ban, except in some cases when they serve food.

Belgium agrees to rail liberalisation

Belgium has agreed to support the liberalisation of international passenger transport by rail by 2010, Transport Minister Renaat Landuyt said on Monday. The Belgian government was initially concerned about the impact on the small, centrally-located country of opening up rail transport. EU member states, however, unanimously agreed to the liberalisation.  

Belgian involved in face transplant

A Belgian doctor was a member of the medical team in France that performed the world’s first face transplant last week. “Only after the operation did we really realise what we had achieved,” Belgian surgeon Benoît Lengelé said. The patient was a 38-year-old French woman who wrote “merci” on a note after she was allowed to see her face after the operation. The woman had been badly mutilated in a bizarre accident involving her pet dog.

[Copyright Expatica News 2005]

Subject: Belgian news