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Brussels Airport to try facial recognition technology

Starting next year, travellers at Brussels Airport could be subject to security checks with face recognition, a measure intended to reduce cases of identity fraud, writes Het Nieuwsblad . Security checks using face recognition are already standard in other major airports including London Heathrow...

Belgium’s riders fail to match Tour de France’s symbolism

While this year’s Tour de France honoured the fallen in Flanders Fields for the First World War centennial, the riders from the neighbourhood failed to rise to the occasion with memorable performances. The 2014 course traced battlefield sites from Ypres to the Swiss border, including the Menin Gate...

Campaign for proper use of on-call pharmacies

The national union of pharmacists is launching a campaign to teach the public how to use on-call pharmacies correctly, after complaints that customers are not following the rules that pharmacists on standby are only to be used in exceptional circumstances. “We’re not night shops,” the union said...

Culture beat – July 25

Take a peek inside the state offices of the Belgian monarchs as the Royal Palace opens its doors for the summer. You can visit the imposing building, once one of the finest royal residences in Europe, until September 7. In tribute to the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of World War One, there’s...

Sven Gatz returns to politics as Flemish Minister

Three years after he said goodbye to politics to become director of the Union of Belgian Brewers, Sven Gatz will return to the political scene as Flemish Minister for Culture, Media, Youth and Brussels. The 47-year-old former liberal fraction leader in the Flemish Parliament is to become, next to...

Sint-Katelijne-Waver is first Belgian town with free wifi

The municipality of Sint-Katelijne-Waver, in Antwerp province, is Belgium's first town to offer free wireless internet to the public. The municipality worked together with Wireless Belgium for the initiative, an association of IT professionals. Free internet access is guaranteed throughout Sint-...

Poppy crop fails due to dry spring

A plan to grow poppies all over Flanders to mark the centenary of the First World War has failed, after the flowers, made famous by the 1915 poem In Flanders Fields by Canadian doctor Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, failed to bloom. The plan of the Agency for Nature and Woodland (ANB) was to plant...

Downward trend in domestic meat consumption

The average Belgian last year ate 50kg of meat, confirming the downward trend of recent years, according to the federal economy ministry. In 2005 the average consumption was 58kg, meaning there has been a fall of 13% in eight years. For certain types of meat, the situation is much worse: While pork...

Nearly 800,000 new retirees in Belgium by 2020

Between 2014 and 2020, an average of 114,000 people are expected to retire in Belgium each year. That is an increase of 30% compared to the period between 2007 and 2010. At this rate, by the end of the decade the pensioner population will have grown by 798,000 people in six years, reports De...

Jewish Museum suspect extradited to Belgium

Mehdi Nemmouche, the man accused of shooting four people in the Jewish Museum in Brussels, will be extradited from France to Belgium, according to a ruling by the French Court of Cassation. The 29-year-old Algerian must now be brought to Belgium within 10 days, where officials will proceed with the...

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