• Sunday, May 31, 2020
  • Last Update : 04:16 pm

Belgian PM offers to quit in crisis started by migrant row

  • Published at 09:58 pm December 19th, 2018
Charles Michel
Belgium's Prime Minister Charles Michel arrives at a European Union leaders summit in Brussels, Belgium December 14, 2018 Reuters

In office since 2014, Michel lost the support of the biggest party in his coalition, the Flemish N-VA, last week in protest at his support of a UN pact to foster cooperation over the world's 21 million refugees

Belgium Prime Minister Charles Michel offered to resign on Tuesday after opponents tabled a no confidence vote in a political crisis triggered by differences over immigration.

In office since 2014, Michel lost the support of the biggest party in his coalition, the Flemish N-VA, last week in protest at his support of a UN pact to foster cooperation over the world's 21 million refugees.

On Tuesday, the 42-year-old lawyer sought backing from left-wing opposition parties so he could hold on to power until parliamentary elections in May.

Instead, the socialists and greens tabled a motion of no confidence in parliament, triggering his offer to quit.

"I must respect the situation. I therefore take the decision to offer my resignation and will go to the king," Michel, who has been in politics since winning a provincial councillor post at 18, told parliament.

Belgium's King Philippe has not taken a decision on whether to accept his offer, the royal palace said.

The king may ask Michel to stay as a caretaker but with limited powers, potentially hampering efforts to rein in the budget and reform social security. He could also speak to other political leaders to try and resolve the issue, or dissolve parliament and trigger an early vote in 40 days.

Belgium's political crisis comes as Europe heads into election mode next year, with seven EU countries plus the European Parliament all going to the polls.

The bloc has been grappling with an upsurge of migrants since 2015 when more than 1 million people entered Europe, many fleeing civil war in Syria and poverty in Africa.

The United States and some other nations, mostly in former communist Eastern Europe, have opposed this year's UN pact, arguing it could encourage immigration.

After the N-VA's departure, Michel's slimmed down three-party coalition consisted of his French-speaking liberal MR and two Flemish parties. 


50
50
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail