Belgium sets new political crisis record

AFP , Tuesday 29 Mar 2011

Belgium's political crisis continues breaking the record for longest period without government

Belgium's political crisis reached another dubious milestone on Tuesday, equalling Iraq's world record of the longest period without a government 289 days after legislative elections.

Politicians from Dutch-speaking Flanders and French-speaking Wallonia have been deadlocked since June 13 elections over Flemish demands for greater autonomy in the linguistically-divided country.

It took Iraq's multiple ethnicities and religious groups 249 days to reach a political pact late last year and 40 more days to form a government.

Belgians held tongue-in-cheek protests on February 17, marking the 249-day milestone with a "chips revolution" across the country that brought thousands of people onto the streets.

New events were planned to mark 289-day record, with the group "Separatism: No in our name" renaming every main square in the cities of Brussels, Antwerp, Namur, Liege and Ghent "Chips Square."

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