King praises climate action demonstrators

Belgium’s Head of State King Filip has said that he finds it encouraging that ordinary citizens are making their voices hears on climate change and socio-economic issues. King Filip made his comments in a speech at the annual New Year’s reception for VIPs at the Royal Palace. The Belgian monarch described the recent protests as “a fine expression of our society’s resilience and of the will to joining together to shape our future”.   

Over the past few months various groups of concerned citizens have taken to the streets to demand policy changes from those in government. Hi-Viz protesters demonstrated against rising fuel prices and tens of thousands of people have attended demonstrations for measures to limit climate change.

"The various movements that we have seen show a will to engage in collective action”, the King said.

"They are asking for a new, more just economic and social dynamic and a fundamental change to our way of life in order to avert an irreversible impact on our planet”.

King Filip call for “all this energy” to be bundled “into a project that offers all our fellow citizens new opportunities”.

The King added that this can be done by working together with young people like those that had taken part in the “Truant for the Climate” demonstrations.

"The young people show ambition and deep feelings of authenticity and solidarity. They have a sharp realisation of the needs of our planet. Let us give them the place they deserve”.     

The King also referred to the fall of the Federal Government and stressed the importance of cooperation in addressing the challenges of our time.   

"Several countries around us are paralysed by division. At an international level we encounter new resistance on fundamental themes such as climate, migration and international trade”, the King said.