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    King Philippe inspects the trooops

    © Belga
    © Belga

    King Philippe inspected the troops on Saturday afternoon, before the traditional military and civil parade that begins the 21st of July celebrations. The King travelled up rue de la Loi in a Lynx, a jeep the army charted especially for the occasion. Queen Mathilde joined him at 4pm. Prince Laurent, Princess Claire, Princess Astrid and Prince Lorenz were in the VIP gallery at that time, along with the couple’s four children. They all walked there from the Palace. 

    The royal couple were escorted to the Place des Palace to meet Brussels mayor Philippe Close. The King and Queen then met disabled war veterans and presented them with medals for Acts of Bravery to mark 100 years since the First World War. 

    In the gallery, they were met by the President of the Senate Christine Defraigne, President of the Chamber Siegfried Bracke, Prime Minister Charles Michel, President of the Brussels Parliament Charles Picqué, the President of the Brussels-Wallonia Federation Parliament Philippe Courard, the President of the Germanist Community Parliament Alexander Miesen, the Minister-President for the Brussels Region Rudi Vervoort, the Minister-President of the Walloon government WIlly Borsus and the Minister-President of the Germanist Community Oliver Paasch. Bart Tommelein was there to represent the Flemish government and André Flahaut was there for the Brussels-Wallonia Federation. The French-language and Flemish-language Presidents of the Constitutional Court, the Prime President and General Prosecutor of the Cassation Court were also present. 

    N-VA Defence Minister Steven Vandeput and Home Affairs Minister Jan Jambon were with the royals during the parade, which began at 4pm.

    Jason Bennett
    The Brussels Times