One of the first first-aiders to intervene during the 22nd of March attacks ends his hunger strike at the airport
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    One of the first first-aiders to intervene during the 22nd of March attacks ends his hunger strike at the airport

    © Belga
    © Belga

    Philippe Vandenberghe has ended his hunger strike.
    He was one of the first first-aiders to intervene after the 22nd of March 2016 attack at the national airport. He announced the end of his strike on his Facebook page. He received a letter from Prime Minister Charles Michel, which met some of his demands for damages for those injured. 

    Mr Vandenberghe is an IT technician at Brussels-National and a first-aider. He began a hunger strike on the 14th of February to protest against the manner in which his disability rate was determined by two doctors at the Medico-legal office, La Libre reported on Thursday. He is also protesting the absence of an appeal procedure, which was supposed to be written into law in July 2017. 

    The problem of the missing “conciliation” procedure should be resolved soon. “I can tell you that a royal decree is being finalized by the Health minister and will be published soon”, Mr Michel wrote in the letter. “The attacks on the 22nd of March 2016 were a tragedy for Belgium. It has irreversibly affected all those who were victims or witnesses. I would once again like to express all my empathy for the horror you experienced during that horrible day”. 

    Mr Vandenberghe rejoiced at this “good news”. “Gandhi needed to go on hunger strike for 21 days before the British empire complied with his demands. It only took me 25 days to get something that was voted into law in 2017 actually applied”, he said. He said he would submit an appeal to get what he is entitled to with regards to his other demands.  

    Andy Sanchez
    The Brussels Times