Verhofstadt to pursue interim government

11th December 2007, Comments 0 comments

Caretaker Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt has reported to the King regarding the task entrusted to him a week ago

Caretaker Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt (Flemish liberal) has reported to the King regarding the task entrusted to him one week ago. King Albert asked Mr. Verhofstadt to seek a swift way out of the current government crisis. He also asked the caretaker PM to start talks that would lead to state reforms.

Following a week of confusing and muddled communication, it is still unclear which parties would be involved in forming an emergency government.

The King asked Mr. Verhofstadt to sound out solutions to the political impasse after Flemish Christian democrat Yves Leterme, former premier of Dutch-speaking Flanders, abandoned his attempts to form a coalition. 

After long series of negotiations and talks, Mr. Leterme failed to reach an agreement on a centre-left coalition of Flemish and Francophone Christian democrats and liberals. A kind of emergency government with limited powers seems to be the consensus now. However, there is no agreement or consensus on who should be involved.

Yves Leterme's CD&V party is prepared to work on an emergency government, but has vetoed the possibility of Guy Verhofstadt as Prime Minister. 6 months further on.Exactly 6 months ago, on June 10, the Belgians went to the polls to vote for a new federal government. Flemish Christian democrat of the CD&V party Yves Leterme was widely recognised as the winner of the elections together with his party and coalition partner Flemish nationalist alliance N-VA.  The liberals on the other hand give caretaker PM Verhofstadt their vote of confidence. "Let Guy Verhofstadt do his work calmly," says Open VLD chairman Bart Somers.

"It is his job, and our task to support him as much as possible."

 According to a recent opinion poll, the incumbent Federal Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt (whose party suffered considerable losses during the last elections) is actually the most popular choice to lead the next Federal Government among the voters of all the parties except Yves Leterme's Christian democrat - Flemish Nationalist alliance.

The composition of an emergency government is still uncertain. The Flemish socialists are not keen on joining an emergency government.


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