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Belgium: Laws on the national flag

Last modified: 2013-06-22 by ivan sache
Keywords: law | protection |
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Proposal to protect the Belgian flag

Until now, Belgium did not have a law protecting the flag against disrespectful use of the flag, like, for instance, burning or stepping on it. A proposal to protect the flag is underway.
The national confederation of the political prisoners and right-having of Belgium want a change in this situation. Two Walloon deputies, Duquesne from the PRL (Parti réformateur libéral) and Mairesse from the PSC (Parti social-chrétien) tabled a proposal to complete the penal code to protect the national flag of Belgium.
Article 282 bis would sentence to jail from eight days up to one year and a 100 to 1,000 Francs fine (times 60 [the actual multiplier] = 6,000 to 60,000 FB, making it an equivalent to US$ 200 to US$ 2,000) anybody who, during a public demonstration or in any place open to the public, would voluntarily show disrespect for the national flag, by tearing it, setting it on fire, speaking about it in a degrading manner, or by delivering it to injuring acts.
(in French: " [toute personne qui aura] volontairement manqué de respect à l'égard du drapeau national en le lacérant, ou en y mettant le feu, ou en proférant des paroles dégradantes, ou en se livrant à des actes ou gestes injurieux ")

Source: La Libre Belgique, 14 May 1997

It has become some sort of a tradition to step on the Belgian national flag or to tear in parts in pro-Flemish demonstrations, to express the wish to end the Belgian State. I do not think it is a coincidence that this proposal was made by two Walloon deputies.

Filip Van Laenen, 16 May 1997


 
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