Ixelles with 1 535 British nationals has more residents from the UK than any other municipality in Brussels. The deputy mayor in Ixelles, Delphine Bourgeois (MR), is in charge of European affairs. In a statement on Sunday (26 June) she said that the municipality is aware of their disappointment at the Leave vote in the British referendum.
"The Brexit is sad news and the commune of Ixelles is very much aware about the disappointment of the British residents,” she said. “For those living here since long time, what happened was unthinkable. Some of them feel they have lost a member of their family," she told the news service Belga after meeting with some of the residents.
She reported about new naturalization applications by British nationals to the municipal administration of Ixelles.
She stresses the European character of the municipality that houses the European Parliament - and has a place in London as well - and is composed of one third of non-Belgian European residents.
Brexit should become an opportunity to relaunch the European project that represents a significant added value to people's daily lives, said the deputy mayor who emphasizes the role of local and regional authorities in this regard.
She mentioned that Ixelles will continue to make citizens aware about European issues, especially through the Consultative Council of European Affairs. Established a year ago, it consists of some 50 people, and organizes thematic evenings and workshops on relaunching the European project.
The Brussels Times (Source: Belga)