Belgium’s coalition gov’t announces split with N-VA over UN migration pact

Belgium’s coalition gov’t announces split with N-VA over UN migration pact

BRUSSELS  (Rahnuma)  Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel announced on Saturday that the Flemish right-wing party N-VA has quit the ‘Swedish’ coalition after disagreement concerning the United Nations Global Migration Compact.

Michel held a press conference on Saturday following threats from Bart De Wever’s N-VA to leave the government if the prime minister maintained his decision to join other heads of state in Marrakech, Morocco.

The ‘Swedish’ coalition includes the liberal parties (MR and Open Vld, blue), the Flemish nationalist party (N-VA, yellow) and the Flemish Christian Democratic party (CD&V, a cross), hence the reference to the Swedish flag, which consists of a yellow cross on a blue background.

The prime minister said he “took note of the departure of the N-VA from the ‘Swedish’ majority” and announced that he will replace the outgoing ministers with two secretaries of state.

“A formal decision was taken in June,” said Michel about Belgium’s commitment to the UN international collaboration on migration.

“I engaged our country based on this decision at the UN forum. In the parliamentary debate on Thursday, it was voted by a very large majority to follow this international cooperation,” he added.

“I thank the N-VA ministers for the gigantic work done in the interest of Belgium (…) I will appoint two secretaries of state to replace the government ministers.”

Supported by other coalition parties such as the MR, the CD&V and the Open Vld, the prime minister has made the decision to continue to support the UN’s proposed pact on migration.

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