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    Federal party leaders to hold talks at the weekend

    King Philippe (centre) and the two senior politicians he appointed as royal informants, Didier Reynders (right) and Johan Vande Lanotte. Credit: ©Belga

    Representatives of several political parties at the federal level are set to hold talks on Sunday, a day before two senior politicians charged with overseeing the formation of a federal government are expected to hand over their latest report to the royal head of state.

    The royal informants, incumbent federal ministers Didier Reynders and Johan Vande Lanotte, invited leaders of the Francophone socialists (PS) and the Flemish nationalist (N-VA), the two biggest parties in each linguistic community, to attend talks on Sunday, according to BX1.

    The talks are set to lay the grounds for the informants’ latest report —  a document reportedly set to take federal negotiations into a so-called “preformation” stage, putting parties one step closer to the formation of a federal government.

    While the informants have remained mostly tight-lipped about the progress of their mission, it has been twice extended by King Philippe, prompting media reports of protracted and even rocky negotiations, after the PS this week pulled out last minute of planned talks with the N-VA.

    Leaders of other parties from both linguistic communities, such as the French and Dutch-speaking liberals (MR; Open Vld, respectively) and greens (Écolo; Groen), as well as the Dutch-speaking socialists (sp.a) and the Christian-Democrats (CD&V) also received the invitation for Sunday’s talks.

    Gabriela Galindo
    The Brussels Times