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Belgian election campaign enters it final week

Belgian election campaign enters it final week
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Campaigning in the final week before the Belgian elections is gathering pace.

Leading the polls in the French-speaking Wallonia region is the socialist party led by Elio di Rupo, with more than 33 per cent.

They have had a telephone hotline open through the weekend, taking 1,500 calls a day.

di Rupo said: “People have been asking questions about their problems, and we’re trying to give them concrete answers.”

di Rupo has criticised the Finance Minister Didier de Reynders who has embraced the French President Nicholas Sarkozy in his campaign.

The Liberal leader de Reynders took full advantage of Sarkozy’s patronage on a recent visit to Brussels, being seen rubbing shoulders at the very top level of international politics. He’s second in the polls on 24.5 per cent.

But things are looking tougher for the Flemish-speaking prime minister Guy Verhofstadt.

Despite promising to create 200,000 more jobs, his liberal VLD party is fourth place in the polls with just under 17 per cent.

Ahead of VLD, and snapping at the heels of the Christain Democrats and the Socialists is the far-right Vlaams Belang.

According to the surveys, the anti-immigration party, headed by Franck Vanhecke has got nearly 22 per cent support.