Flemish separatists N-VA entering Brussels Government may be 'unavoidable' in 2024

Flemish separatists N-VA entering Brussels Government may be 'unavoidable' in 2024
Bart De Wever, the Flemish nationalist party N-VA's leader, on the left and Rudi Vervoort, the Region of Brussels-Capital's Minister-President on the right. Credit: Jonas Roosens/Belga.

Brussels' Minister-President Rudi Vervoort (PS) has said that his party may be forced to enter into government with the Flemish nationalists N-VA in the 2024 elections. He is the latest politician to mull over how best to deal with the recent rise of Flemish nationalism.

In the first month of the new year, Belgian political parties appear to be already getting themselves into campaign mode for the 2024 elections. Indeed, with both the federal and regional elections to be held next year, some are already making calculations on who will be composing the next governing majorities.

Among those best placed to enter into government, the Flemish nationalist and conservative party N-VA has increased calls for state reform after these elections, which would see the Region of Brussels fall under the authority of both Flanders and Wallonia.

As a result, Brussels' French-speaking parties met recently "in secret" to discuss how best to counter N-VA's proposal. However, in an interview given to La Libre, the capital's Minister-President Rudi Vervoort indicated his readiness to enter into government with the Flemish nationalists if necessary.

'What else can we do?'

For Vervoort, the N-VA's presence may become "unavoidable" due to the complicated multi-party system in Brussels, with a majority needing to be reached within both linguistic communities.

"If we have no choice, how else can we do it?" He told the French-speaking outlet, before adding that "we are not going to block our institutions," which he does not believe that N-VA is interested in doing.

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Furthermore, Vervoort indicated that his party's Flemish counterparts Vooruit have already shown a greater willingness to work with Bart De Wever's N-VA, with party leader Conner Rousseau having announced a possible coalition last Sunday. In his view, an alliance with N-VA would block far-right and fellow Flemish separatist party Vlaams Belang from gaining power in Flanders.

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