Aside from road safety, bicycle theft and the lack of infrastructure, the hilly topography of Brussels presents a sizeable disincentive to many people who would otherwise choose to cycle, said spokes person Pascal Smet, who is also Flemish minister for Brussels. “By promoting cycling in low-lying areas and installing cycle highways along railway lines, we want to reach commuters and others in Brussels who don’t cycle yet,” he said. “There are more and more cyclists in Brussels, but there’s an even larger group of potential cyclists who remain to be won over.”
De Gelder’s defence had pleaded for his internment in a psychiatric institution, arguing that he was insane and unfi t for trial. A committal hearing in Dendermonde passed that question to a higher court in Ghent, which rejected the application. Th e jury will now decide whether he is to be interned or imprisoned.
Non-Belgians can vote for local representatives (and, in Antwerp city only, district reps), provided they:
• are 18 years old or over on 14 October, 2012
• register on the voter list before 1 August
• are not excluded from voting by a judicial ruling For people from outside the European Union, there is an extra requirement:
• to have resided continually in Belgium for five years
Non Belgian nationals are not allowed to vote in provincial or national elections, whether they are EU citizens or not.
Among the requirements are that each new daycare facility receive a licence from Kind & Gezin, the Flemish agency for families, and that staff speak Dutch, in order for the facility to be eligible for subsidies. Some crèches that were previously registered with Kind & Gezin have now switched to the French-speaking equivalent to avoid the new language rule.
On Wednesday in Lommel, a memorial service was held for 15 children from the sixth class of ’t Stekske school and teacher Raymond Theunis. The 14 white coffins – one of the boys had been buried privately by his family, but was represented by a class photo – were carried into the Souverein function hall by soldiers.
Suu Kyi also asked Flanders to help with the building of a school in Myanmar. “Flanders is an international leader in the fields of health care and education,” said Peeters. “I asked her about the needs and priorities of Myanmar in those areas, and … she asked if Flanders would give support to the construction of a school. I told her I would look into it.”
The two bus drivers involved in the crash, 35-year-old Geert Michiels and 52-year-old Paul Van de Velde, both from Aarschot, were buried earlier this week in private family ceremonies. Teacher Raymond Theunis and administrator Veerle Vanheukelom from Lommel and teacher Frank Van Kerckhove and ski instructor Monique Van Bocxlaere from Heverlee, will also be buried in private.
The appointment underlines one of the main points of Peeters’ visit to Myanmar ( formerly known as Burma): the support from Flanders for democracy in the country, which is still under the rule of a military junta. By-elections are scheduled next month for 48 parliamentary seats; this would still leave the junta with a majority, but the elections are being seen as a tentative step towards democracy. Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy party is taking part in the election, after their boycott of an election held in 2010.
Part of the savings was covered by the use of reserves intended to cope with sudden budget shocks. In other measures not affecting spending, inheritance taxes will now be levied one month earlier than before, which will bring in €60 million. The government has also proposed doubling the so-called division tax – paid when one of the owners of a home buys the other out – from 1% of the price to 2%, for a saving of €30 million.