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    No Tomorrowland, No Pukkelpop, No Rock Werchter

    The festival has taken place in De Schorre in Boom since 2005. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

    Festivals across Belgium have started to announce their cancellations after Belgium’s latest update concerning measures to fight the new coronavirus (Covid-19) in the country.

    All mass events in Belgium are banned until 31 August, the National Security Council announced at a press conference on Wednesday evening. This means that, among other things, Tomorrowland, Pukkelpop and Rock Werchter have announced they will cancel this year.

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    “Dear world, with a lot of pain in our hearts, we have to inform you that Tomorrowland cannot take place in 2020,” organisers said on Twitter. “We understand and support the governmental order that has been issued. The 16th edition of Tomorrowland will take place in the summer of 2021”.

    Couleur Café and Brussels Summer Festival will not be allowed to take place, according to Bruzz. More cancellations are expected over the coming hours.

    When asked what constitutes a ‘mass event’, Prime Minister Sophie Wilmès did not define. However, she did say that the aim was to give a clear message to the organisers of festivals that they can’t go ahead.

    Lockdown

    Belgium will extend its lockdown deadline until 3 May in the fight against the coronavirus, announced Prime Minister Sophie Wilmès during a press conference on Wednesday.

    On Tuesday, the Group of Experts for an Exit Strategy (GEES), which has to ease the country out of the lockdown, handed over its first report to the government. Following that report, and a meeting with Belgium’s National Security Council, joined by the country regions’ Minister-Presidents, Wilmès announced Belgium’s new shutdown deadline, and clarified several other measures.

    Jules Johnston
    The Brussels Times