The Belgian monarch King Albert the Second has accepted his government’s resignation, almost certainly triggering a general election.
It comes after efforts to reconcile different parties over a disputed bilingual voting district around Brussels failed.
Prime Minister Yves Leterme offered his resignation last week. The king rejected it, keeping the government temporarily in office.
Belgium has gone through four governments – two led by Leterme – since 2007.
The ongoing political turmoil has led some to speculate on whether the divided country would stay in one piece.