The Walloon government has decided to expand the Walloon Radicalism Plan and to take additional measures to fight clandestine places of worship where “studies show more radical messages are often preached,” said Walloon Minister-President Paul Magnette(PS), Vice-President Maxime Prévot (cdH), and Minister of Local Government Paul Furlan (PS) at a conference at the Elysette in Jambes (Namur) on Wednesday afternoon. “The Walloon government is in charge of registering places of worship, so a land register and an investigation of these as yet unofficial places will take place in Wallonia. We will then try to convince everyone in charge of such places to come out in the open,” explains Paul Magnette, adding he does not wish to “make assumptions or name and shame anyone.” “We will give aldermen instructions to follow common law and implement the closure, either temporary or permanent, of places which will not adhere,” added Paul Furlan.
These establishments may be registered officially when they conform with financial transparency rules and democratic values, the use of French for every administrative act, rules relating to security on the premises, and sound administrative and financial management practices.
At the same time, the government expanded the Walloon Radicalism Plan set up following last January’s Charlie Hebdo attacks, adding 4 million euros to the 10 million aimed at facilitating social and professional integration for newly arrived migrants, the five million aimed at strengthening urban policies, and the two million at joining Verviers and Mouscron in a call for bids to develop “radicalism projects” within social cohesion regeneration plans.
The Walloon government is also launching an inter-federal “helpline”, a comparative study of international situations through Wallonia-Brussels International, and improving training for professionals on the ground.
Oscar Schneider (Source: Belga)