‘Last resort’: Belgium should not tighten curfew now, says Interior Minister
Share article:
Share article:

‘Last resort’: Belgium should not tighten curfew now, says Interior Minister

Credit: Belga

The curfew should not immediately be tightened to stop Belgium’s coronavirus figures from rising further, according to Interior Minister Annelies Verlinden.

One of the measures in the so-called “Plan B” of the managing strategy that the experts advised the government to activate is implementing an “earlier and streamlined curfew” across the country, but Verlinden is not in favour of such a restriction.

“I do not want to anticipate matters, but I have always said that we have to be careful with the curfew,” she said on Flemish radio. “As far as I am concerned, we can only look at such an adjustment as a last resort.”

Verlinden stressed that it is up to the Consultative Committee to see “which measures are appropriate” right now, but added that the curfew could not be tightened “just like that.”

Related News:

 

Since it was implemented in October, Belgium’s curfew has come under fire several times, as politicians questioned whether it was still necessary and proportionate, but the Council of State ruled that the measure remains constitutional.

Currently, the measure is in force between midnight and 5:00 AM in Flanders and Wallonia, and from 10:00 PM to 6:00 AM in the Brussels-Capital Region.

After a timeline of relaxations was announced at the previous Consultative Committee meeting, several politicians – both Flemish and Francophone – started calling to abolish the curfew from 1 May, when the country’s bars and restaurants were set to reopen.

On Wednesday evening, however, virologist and GEMS-member Steven Van Gucht said on Flemish television that the current figures and “metropolitan context in Brussels” did not allow for a relaxation of the Brussels’ curfew. “What’s more, I’d sooner see the other Regions switching to the Brussels curfew than the other way around.”

The Consultative Committee has been meeting digitally to discuss changes to the measures and “analyse the situation in detail based on the latest figures” since 3:00 PM.

The meeting will be followed by a press conference, Prime Minister Alexander De Croo’s cabinet confirmed to The Brussels Times. The timing has not been announced yet.

Maïthé Chini
The Brussels Times

Latest news

Mayor wants to close two Brussels bars where alleged sexual assaults took place
Ixelles' Mayor Christos Doulkeridis (Ecolo) said that he’d like to close the two bars that employed a man accused of raping multiple patrons, ...
‘Untenable’: Mayor says situation at Brussels North station is out of control
The situation at Brussels North Station is no longer tenable, Schaerbeek's mayor Cécile Jodogne (Défi) says. Drug dealing, homelessness, ...
Suicide second-leading cause of death among European youth
Suicide is the number two killer among young people living in Europe, a recent Unicef report on the state of their mental health found. The ...
‘Too little, too late’: Brussels mayors criticise CST implementation
After a two week delay, the Covid Safe Ticket (CST) will become mandatory in several situations in Brussels from today (Friday). Some mayors blame a ...
Sciensano expert warns of rising Covid-19 cases this winter
The return of colder weather and the relaxing of health measures are giving rise to new Covid-19 contaminations and hospitalisations around Belgium, ...
Hospital food is making you sick, Belgian study shows
Eating hospital meals results in a measurable decline in health, according to a report from the Flemish television network VTM, which paints a ...
Belgium in Brief: Supply Issues
There are few things more jarring than walking into a store and finding that the shelves are empty, be that partially or otherwise. One thing ...
Stolen Magritte painting on display for first time in ten years
Surrealist painter René Magritte's work "Olympia", which made headlines across the world when it was stolen from a museum in Belgium in 2009, will be ...
Brussels airport pilots ’15 minute’ PCR test
Brussels Airport has announced that it will soon begin a trial of an ultra-fast PCR test able to detect Covid-19 in 15 minutes, a far faster ...
Over 1,000 demonstrators march in Brussels following sexual assault allegations
Around 1,300 people gathered in Ixelles on Thursday night to march against sexual violence, according to reporting from Bruzz. The march was ...
Covid Safe Ticket mandatory in Brussels, but no fines yet
The Brussels-Capital Region will expand the use of the Covid Safe Ticket (CST) from today (Friday), but it will take a few days before rule-breakers ...
Belgium hosts ‘farewell party’ for Merkel today
Angela Merkel will be in Belgium on Friday for an official visit as a symbolic "farewell" before leaving her position as German Chancellor after 16 ...