‘Vlaams Belang’ takes its namesake to court
26 November 2004
BRUSSELS – The Vlaams Belang, the new name for Flanders’ far right Vlaams Blok party, is being taken to court by an anti-racism group with the same name.
The four trade union workers who formed the original Vlaams Belang on 8 November in Liege, announced their intentions on Friday.
The Vlaams Blok re-named itself Vlaams Belang – Flemish Interest – on 14 November after the supreme court confirmed that the party was in breach of Belgium’s anti-racism laws.
The Liege trade unionists said they had deliberately set up the alternative Vlaams Belang group in a bid to highlight the dangers of the extreme right.
“Faced with the rise of extreme right parties and the growing attention they receive in the media, we could not sit back and do nothing,” said Pierre Heldenbergh.
Their campaign aims to keep out elected representatives from the far right in the local elections in Liege in 2006.
Democratic parties were trying all legal means to do so, said Secretary General of the Liege-based group Thierry Bodson, adding that their first move was to cheat the political party of its new name.
Vlaams Belang mark two is believed to be less than impressed by the initiative, reportedly judging the move ridiculous.
“The creation of this not for profit group ‘Vlaams Belang’ cannot stop a party of the same name from using it,” the ex-Blok said a statement.
The party pointed out that the Liege group would not be able to use the name in the elections.
[Copyright Expatica 2004]
Subject: Belgian news