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Nationalists Surge After Belgian Govt Collapse Over Migrant Pact

Belgium State Secretary for Asylum and Immigration Theo Francken, arrives at 'Le Cercle de Lorraine', a Belgian business club, to address a conference on migration in Europe, in Brussels on January 30, 2018. (Photo by EMMANUEL DUNAND / AFP) (Photo credit should read EMMANUEL DUNAND/AFP/Getty Images)
EMMANUEL DUNAND/AFP/Getty Images
CHRIS TOMLINSON

Support for Belgium’s two largest Flemish nationalist parties, who are both anti-mass migration, has exploded after the collapse of the government due to disagreements over the UN migrant pact.

When combined, the conservative New Flemish Alliance (N-VA) and the populist Vlaams Belang now account for a massive 42 percent of the vote in Flanders according to a poll released by Belgian newspaper Het Nieuwsblad earlier this week Le Soir reports.

The poll was conducted just after the New Flemish Alliance resigned from the coalition government following their vocal opposition to the country signing the controversial UN migrant pact in Marrakech earlier this month. Shortly afterwards, Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel offered his resignation to Belgian King Philippe.

While the N-VA expanded their support, Vlaams Belang, the Flemish populist party that sits in the same European Parliamentary group as Matteo Salvini’s Lega and Marine Le Pen’s Rassemblement National (RN),  doubled their support from six to twelve percent.

The UN migration pact, which led to the collapse of the Belgian coalition, has been rejected by several European Union member states including Austria, Hungary and the populist government of Italy who refused to sign the agreement saying that it would be voted on in the Italian parliament instead.

Even in countries where the government has been supportive of the agreement, such as France under President Emmanuel Macron, there have been severe criticisms of the pact. The populist Gilets Jaunes (Yellow Vest) movement has made the pact one of its criticisms of the Macron government with members demanding France opt out of the agreement.

Macron has also faced opposition from current and former high ranking members of the French armed forces over the issue as well. Several French generals, along with former Defence Minister Charles Millon, signed a letter that referred to the French president as a “traitor” for signing the pact.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)breitbart.com

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