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Belgium's King Albert begins farewell tour

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Belgium's King Albert begins farewell tour


It is the last week in the job for Belgium’s King Albert and his royal highness is on tour across the country ahead of his abdication on Sunday.

Thousands of people turned out in Ghent for a chance to say a personal goodbye to the monarch who has reigned for nearly two decades.

“It’s his last visit as king so we want to be here. We want to see him of course,” said one onlooker.

Sentiments shared by another royal watcher who said: “We’ve come to see the king. I think the king plays an important part in keeping the country together. I want to give the same values to my children.”

But not everyone in Belgium has been touched by the royal fever in the same way. Rightist groups have been demonstrating against the royal family and calling for the country to be split.

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