Share article:
Share article:

Nearly 40% of Flemish would vote for independence

The Belgian flag flying in Places des Martyres in Brussels. Credit:Dr Les (Leszek - Leslie) Sachs/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Nearly 40% of Flemish would vote to split up Belgium if a referendum were to be officially organised, as opposed to only 14% of Walloons and 17% of Brussels residents.

A new IPSOS survey published in Le Soir and RTL question a total of 2,508 Belgian citizens over the age of 18 about their opinions on the state of the federal government.

The survey split respondents’ replies depending on whether they lived in Brussels, Flanders or Wallonia, with their added-up responses used to represent the Belgian replies.

Nearly eight months after the results of the federal elections continue to see parties unable to agree on the formation of a federal government, the survey showed that 37% of Flemish respondents would vote to split up from the rest of Belgium in any potential referendums on the question.

In Wallonia and Brussels, those numbers stand at 14% and 17% respectively, but the added figures show that 28% of Belgian respondents would be favourable to a split up, and that 40% would favour organising a referendum on the issue, 7su7 reports.

Bart Maddens, a political scientist at KU Leuven university, said that feelings past periods of political instability also saw a spike in feelings of separatism among Flemish residents, which subsided once the waters settled.

“In October 1991, there was a huge clash between communities regarding the arms deliveries from a Walloon factory,” Maddens told HLN. “A survey from KU Leuven at the time showed that 33% of Flemish people were in favour of splitting up Belgium.”

“A few weeks later, when the clash was over it, turned out to be just 14%,” he said, adding that the “phenomenon” had become more recurrent since then and that it was “now happening again.”

The survey, called the Great Barometer, also showed that a majority of Flemish respondents want new elections to be organised, as opposed to around 29% of Walloons of Brussels residents.

A majority of the respondents also said that, while they did not consider the impasse at the federal level to impact their personal lives, they considered that having no government for over a year was “shameful.”

Gabriela Galindo
The Brussels Times

Latest news

Anti-vaxxers demonstrate against Covid Safe Ticket in Brussels
Hundreds of supporters of the anti-vaxx movement gathered on Saturday outside the headquarters of the Pfizer pharmaceutical company to protest ...
Belgium’s investment funds total 260 billion euros in assets
Belgium’s funds industry grew by 5.3% (13 billion euros) in the second quarter of this year, bringing investment funds available to the public to ...
Brussels to Luxembourg by train in two hours soon possible
The fastest train ride between Brussels and Luxembourg currently takes almost three hours, but that could be slashed to about two hours thanks to the ...
Daily Covid infections up by almost 30% in Belgium
Between 6 and 12 October, an average of 2,438 people were infected with the Covid-19 virus every day, according to figures from the Sciensano public ...
Over 80,000 companies in Belgium non-compliant with anti-money laundering meassures
Over 80,000 companies and non-profits in Belgium are still not compliant with the Ultimate Business Owner (UBO) register, which is required of them ...
Increase in tax exemption for donations in Belgium fails to meet expectations
The increase from 45% to 60% in the tax exemption for donations, decided by the former federal government in June 2020, has cost Belgium more than ...
Sex workers in Belgium to get more social rights protection
The social rights of sex workers will soon be better protected in Belgium, Belga News Agency reports. The Council of Ministers has approved a draft ...
Belgian firms sent almost 266 billion euros to tax havens last year
Hundreds of Belgian firms sent close to 266 billion euros to tax havens last year, De Tijd reported on Saturday. Any Belgian individual or firm ...
Belgian investigator wins prestigious US prize
Olivier Hardy, an investigator with the federal police’s anti-terrorist unit in Brussels, DR3, received on Friday a "Top Cop" prize in Washington for ...
Pegasus Project: European Parliament awards journalism prize to investigation of use of spyware
The Daphne Caruana Prize for Journalism was awarded on Thursday to the journalists from the Pegasus Project coordinated by the Forbidden Stories ...
Belgians can now test their knowledge of driving rules and win prizes
The Walloon Road Safety Agency (AWSR) launched on Friday a quiz to allow the general public to test their knowledge of the highway code. Last year, ...
600 extras wanted for film about Belgian ‘Porn King’ and notorious Antwerp nightclub
A Belgian movie telling the story of a notorious Antwerp nightclub with connections to a Belgian 'Porn King' is looking for 600 extras at the end of ...