Belgium to Issue Timely Apology for Congo Kidnappings

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Belgium to Issue Timely Apology for Congo Kidnappings

Charles Michel

Belgian prime minister, Charles Michel, is to issue an apology on behalf of Belgium for kidnapping mixed-race children during the 1940s. The children in question, 20.000 or so, were kidnapped from their Congolese mothers when Congo was still a Belgian colony, to then be raised by the Catholic Church in Belgium. As if the kidnapping wasn’t bad enough…

 

The Church already apologised for its role in the kidnappings a few years ago, so Belgium seems a bit late to the party. Perhaps Belgium didn’t want to stand out too much when condemning kidnappings or forcing children to grow up in Belgium. Either that or they were discussing the matter thoroughly between their six parliaments & governments up until now. 

 

Last month, Charles Michel was confronted with findings from UN experts on the matter who “urged the government to apologise for the atrocities committed under colonial rule in the Congo”. Charles Michel did not respond at first, although later – in a slightly less apologetic mood- he said that any suggestion that is the cause of modern-day discrimination is “very strange”. According to the Brussels Times, this makes the gesture all the more unique…

 

Belgium’s colonial history is clearly a taboo, however, with increasing pressure the past has become more difficult to ignore. On the upside, this should put any doubts as to whether Belgium is a real country to bed: 

Google Search Belgium

A fully fledged European nation it is.

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