South of Flanders lies... in France

An invitation sent by Flanders House in New York has sparked indignation in Brussels and Wallonia. Toerisme Vlaanderen, the Flemish tourism organisation responsible for the mistake, has offered its apologies.

It could have been a question in a quiz. What's lying south of Flanders? Flanders House had an invitation ready for a reception in New York. A map on the flyer (small photo) showed the Netherlands and Flanders, also known as the "Low Countries" where the residents speak Dutch.

However, a "small" mistake had been made. The map showed "France" just south of Flanders, where Wallonia lies. On top of that, the Belgian capital of Brussels was situated in the middle of Flanders, whereas Brussels is much closer to Wallonia.

The Brussels state secretary responsible for Tourism, Christos Doulkeridis, is outraged.

"Apparently, Flemish ambassadors in the United States have just forgotten about the existence of Wallonia and made it a part of France. Everyone is shocked, this is unacceptable."

Toerisme Vlaanderen has admitted the mistake and has apologised. "Things had to go very fast. We only had two days to get everything ready. That is how it happened."

Mr Doulkeridis has sent a "correct" map of Belgium to Flanders House in New York.

For more information about Flanders and Flanders House, click here for the official website.