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WWII bomb dampens the holiday spirit in Ghent

It was not Christmas as usual in Ghent, but one that many will remember after an unexploded Second World War bomb was discovered in a residential garden. The Christmas Eve surprise forced around a hundred people within 300 metres of the explosive device to put their festivities on hold and vacate...

Long lineups for cash as card payment system crashes

The stress of last minute shopping got even worse Monday when all card payments in Belgium went dormant. The electronic payment system shut down or operated at a snail’s pace during the afternoon’s Christmas shopping rush. Frustrated shoppers were turned away from cashiers, forced onto the streets...

Belgians can expect smaller mobile phone bills in 2014

Call it an early gift for many Belgians this year as mobile phone bills are set to drop. Consumer Affairs Minister Johan Vande Lanotte has announced an agreement with Belgium’s four major mobile phone companies that will see fees drop for many customers. The deal has the telecom giants set to offer...

Afghan asylum seekers demand meeting with prime minister

Hundreds of Afghan asylum seekers are enduring the cold, wet weather as they protest in Mons to force Belgium’s Prime Minister Ellio di Rupo to meet with them. More than 300 protesters marched from Brussels to Mons this weekend, where di Rupo is also the town’s mayor, and set-up camp in front of...

Wage watchers: How much does the owner of a retail shop earn?

What is your job? For four years I’ve had a shop, Hippy Chic, in the centre of Leuven, selling clothing, accessories and jewellery. I’m all alone in the shop, so I do everything: taking care of stock, placing orders, unpacking deliveries, setting prices, labelling, selling, cleaning, managing the...

One Direction for Christmas

It is perhaps unfair to smear legendary Liverpudlian icons the Beatles with the same brush we use to paint a picture of England’s latest pop sensations One Direction. The latter have in truth much more to do with the likes of Menudo and New Kids on the Block. But John, George, Ringo and Paul were...

Thousands of union and NGO members block Brussels streets in protest

Brussels suffered only “limited” disruption yesterday, police said, as an estimated 10,000 took part in protests to coincide with the European Summit taking place in the city. About 50 trade unions, NGOs and farmers’ organisations called for “another Europe”. The groups are united under the banner...

Radar cameras credited for saving lives on Belgian motorways

A decrease in serious accidents along motorways in Wallonia is being attributed to the presence of radar cameras. Although not popular among all drivers, the figures show that lives are being saved because of them. According to the statistics, the number of highway deaths in areas patrolled by...

New study shows Belgian workers drink too much

According to a health study undertaken by human resource company Securex, close to one in seven Belgian workers are drinking beyond healthy limits. The survey of a thousand workers revealed that 15 percent are at a much greater risk of suffering liver disease, cardiovascular disorders, cancer,...

British and Irish prime ministers visit Belgian World War One sites

British prime minister David Cameron joined Irish Taoiseach Enda Kenny yesterday for a visit to First World War sites in West Flanders. The two leaders toured five memorials and cemeteries from the 1914-1918 conflict before attending a European Council summit in Brussels. Britain and Ireland have...

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