Peacebuilding and Reconciliation: An Introduction


The Situation in Belgium ? A Case of Separatism

In 1950 King Leopold III returned to the throne of Belgium following five years in exile. His return was met with disdain due to, primarily, his lack of action against the Nazis. The Walloon community resorted to a violent strike against the king who eventually resigned, leaving the throne to his son, Prince Baudouin. Nonetheless, the strike further separated the Walloons and Flemish. During the 1960s, the separation continued. The linguistic divide was legally solidified, and all major Belgian political parties split into either Flemish or Francophone wings. It is for this reason that the Belgian parliament acts as a forum for discussion for the two communities that still exist in conflict.