Minister denounced for passivity during demonstrations in Brussels
Monday, 28 March 2016
Interior minister Jan Jambon was denounced for passivity during the violent demonstrations in Brussels on Sunday afternoon. “It’s unacceptable that the minister of interior affairs did not take any precautions to keep public order by preventing the arrival of hooligans who didn’t have any permission to demonstrate in Vilvoorde and Brussels,” said the DéFI party (Democratic Federalist Independent) on Monday (28 March).
The statement was titled “N-VA protects its thugs”, referring to the New Flemish Alliance, a Flemish nationalist party.
The chairman of DéFI, Olivier Maingain, said that what happened was “an unacceptable attack against the dignity of the victims and all those suffering from the terror attacks. The refusal by N-VA to explicitly condemn the fascists proves once again its ambiguous links with the far right,” he added and demanded the justice minister and the prime minister to be “held accountable to the parliament”.
Despite the cancellation of Saturday’s march against fear and the ban on demonstrations, about 400 far right protestors and football hooligans gathered in the afternoon in Vilvoorde, took the train to Brussels under police escort and gathered near the stock exchange. The police immediately established a security perimeter around the place.
The protestors were gradually pushed to Brussels North train station, heavily surrounded by police. A dozen arrests took place in Brussels. The local police forces in Antwerp and Mechelen announced that they would not arrest anyone arriving by train from the violent and illegal demonstration.
The presidents of some other parties have also condemned the event in a joint statement. For his part, the president of the N-VA, Bart De Wever, has preferred to keep his distance from the event.