Share article:
Share article:

Antwerp mayor wants Belgian Drug Enforcement Administration

© Belga

Antwerp Mayor Bart De Wever wants to create the Belgian equivalent of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

The City of Antwerp is facing a violent war between drug traffickers, but it can only tackle the symptoms, De Wever told De Zevende Dag and VTM Nieuws.

Gunfire took place in Deurne, Antwerp, one hour before the second night of the security operation “Night Watch” began.

Night Watch is what the Antwerp police are calling the largest security operation in the past 20 years against organised drugs crime, set up to combat drugs-related violence in the city.

“They are adapting, we will adapt too,” De Wever reacted on Flemish television.

Related Articles


The mayor highlighted the efforts made in his city in the fight against drug trafficking. “The first year I was mayor, 4,700 kilos of cocaine were seized, last year it was 61,000 kilos,” he said.

The “stroomplan” set up under the previous legislature is judged positively by experts but has too little capacity. The judiciary must be able to prosecute and the legislation must therefore be adapted, he argued.

He hopes that the next government agreement will include the creation of a DEA based on the American model, as he had agreed with the president of the francophone socialist party, Paul Magnette.

De Wever and Magnette worked together as so-called pre-formateurs, tasked with sounding out the other parties on the possibility of a coalition, but to no avail. Flemish liberal leader Egbert Lachaert and Dutch-speaking socialist party leader Conner Rousseau are the latest pair to try and form a government.

Jason Spinks
The Brussels Times

Latest news

Staff strike at application centre for asylum seekers
The staff of an application centre for asylum seekers in Brussels began a 24-strike on Monday morning, meaning that no one can apply for asylum there ...
Bpost plans to merge parcel and letter services in Belgium
The new CEO of Bpost – Belgium's primary mail delivery company and one of the country's largest civilian employers – has decided to merge the ...
Belgian playground bullying drama wins at London Film Festival
Playground (original title 'Un Monde'), the first feature film by Belgian director Laura Wandel, was awarded the top prize in the First Feature ...
Brussels launches initiatives to improve cyclist and pedestrian safety
Two new initiatives are being developed in Brussels to make the city safer and more pedestrian and cyclist-friendly, especially around key areas on ...
Vaccination coverage in Wallonia breaks 70 percent
The Wallonia Region in Belgium has reached the milestone of having 70 percent of its population receive at least one shot of a Covid-19 vaccine, ...
Belgian youth asked to skip school for Friday’s climate strike
Young people in Belgium have been called on by the climate movement Youth for Climate to once again skip school and take to the streets during the ...
Belgium to invest in sustainable heating in 2022
The Federal Government will set aside about €1 million in its 2022 budget for a social tariff for sustainable heating, Federal Energy Minister Tinne ...
Over 50,000 march against fascism in Rome
Tens of thousands of people demonstrated against fascism in Rome on Saturday, one week after violent protests against the Covid certificate. Over ...
Will Brussels bounce back?
The lockdowns have tested the city and forced it to confront key questions about its future. Derek Blyth looks back at an extraordinary moment in our ...
Belgium’s health minister not in favour of a general booster shot
The latest figures on new coronavirus cases are worrying, but rather than imposing new safety measures, what is needed is full compliance with ...
Thousands protest against the Covid health pass in France
Demonstrations against the health pass and other measures aimed at preventing the spread of the Coronavirus mobilised tens of thousands of protesters ...
Record-breaking 770-metre highline installed in Freÿr, Belgium
A 770-metre long highline was installed at an altitude of 70 metres at the Freÿr Rocks on Saturday, setting a new Belgian record, according to ...