Expatica news

‘Foreigners enrich Belgian life’ new Flanders poll finds

20 December 2004

BRUSSELS – Seven out of 10 Flemish Belgians believe the presence of immigrants in their country enriches Belgian life, but the anti-immigration Vlaams Belang remains the single most popular political party in Flanders.

The result emerged from a survey of 1,000 people from Flanders, carried out by VTM’s TV programme Telefacts, and reported in the Flemish newspapers on Monday.

However, 60 percent of the Flemish people polled also said they wouldn’t buy a house in an immigrant area.

A majority (62 percent) also said they didn’t think immigrants made enough effort to integrate and at least 97 percent thought foreigners should learn Dutch.

The survey showed old people were less tolerant than the younger generation, particularly in the Flemish part of Brabant.

The far-right Vlaams Belang, which used to be called Vlaams Blok, was also confirmed in a political poll published on Monday by La Libre Belgique as the single most popular party in Flanders.

Its leader Filip Dewinter also came in third place as the most popular personality in the region, behind Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt and socialist Steve Stevaert.

[Copyright Expatica 2004]

Subject: Belgian news