Belgium’s response to the coronavirus crisis has been deemed the bottom of the class, according to a new international study by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).
The damning results from the EIU rank Belgium as doing the worst out of 21 OECD members, based on an assessment of three “quality of response” criteria (number of tests, provision of non-Covid-19 healthcare and the number of above-average excess deaths).
With a score of 2.11 out of a possible 4, Belgium ranked worse than Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom, who all ranked next worst with a score of 2.22. Read More.
A bust of former Belgian King Leopold II will be taken down from display in Ghent, as part of a wider push in the country to face up to the legacy of the colonial ruler.
Currently sitting in Zuidpark, the statue will be officially removed on 30 June – a symbolic date to coincide with the anniversary of Congo’s independence in 1960 – the city announced on Thursday.
Under Leopold II’s colonial regime, millions of Congolese people died. Lack of reliable sources have made it difficult to form an accurate estimation, but modern estimates range from 1 million to 15 million. In recent years, a consensus of around 10 million deaths has been reached among historians.Read more.
Belgium’s daily update on the new coronavirus figures for the past 24 hours has faced a delay on Thursday due to a mistake made in one of the laboratories.
One lab reported incorrect figures about the latest coronavirus infections to Sciensano, Belgium’s national health institute, on Thursday, causing a delay in the reporting of the new situation.
Since March, Sciensano has published the latest figures about the number of new infections, hospital admissions and deaths for the past 24 hours in Belgium on its website, every day at 11:00 AM. Read more.
The temperature checks imposed on passengers at Brussels Airport are prohibited by Belgium’s and the EU’s data privacy laws, Belgium’s data privacy watchdog said.
In an online statement, Belgium’s Data Protection Authority (GBA/APB) said laws did not allow airports to harvest and process people’s health data with the use of advanced technology.
In order to resume air travel, Brussels Airport imposed mandatory body temperature checks to all passengers entering the terminal. Any traveller who has a temperature above 38ºC has to go through a second check and fill up a questionnaire. Read more.