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Belgium's new government to be sworn in today

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Belgium's new government to be sworn in today


Belgium’s new prime minister, Elio Di Rupo and his new government are to be sworn in later today.

It marks an end to the country’s record breaking 541 days of being without a government due to months of political deadlock.

Di Rupo will be Belgium’s first French-speaking premier in three decades and the first Socialist to lead the country since 1974.

Although Flemish Nationalist Bart de Wever and his N-VA party won the last election, after blocking so many initiatives to form a government he was eventually excluded from the negotiating table. His pro-independence party is not part of the new government.

But many challenges lie ahead for Di Rupo. Last Friday thousands of Belgians marched in protest at anticipated austerity measures.

And along with economic pressures the new government must also satisfy demands of the Dutch-speaking Flemish majority for devolution of powers.

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