Major report slamsBlok’s racist politics
27 January 2004
BRUSSELS – One of Europe’s most respected anti-racism organisations harshly criticised Belgium’s far-right Vlaams Blok party on Tuesday.
In a major new report, the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI), which is part of the Strasbourg-based Council of Europe, slammed the Flemish-speaking Blok’s use of racist language in much of its propaganda.
“ECRI expresses concern at the continuing presence of racist and xenophobic discourse in politics in Belgium and at the increasing success of parties that resort to racist and xenophobic propaganda,” the report said.
“ECRI also reiterates its concern that the nationalist propaganda of the Vlaams Blok contributes to fostering a climate of tension in the relations between the different regions and communities of Belgium,” the document continued.
The Vlaams Blok regularly calls for Flanders to be allowed to split from French-speaking Belgium and the party is also vehemently anti-immigration.
In recent months it has been campaigning hard against plans to give non-EU foreigners the right to vote in local elections in Belgium.
The ECRI report called on the Belgian authorities to prosecute parties that use racist and intolerant propaganda.
[Copyright Expatica News 2004]
Subject: Belgian news