Tag Archives: BELGIUM

Retail sales in the Euro area rose by 3% in February

Statistics on the dynamics of retail sales in the euro area in February were better than the forecast of analysts. Sales increased by 3% compared to the previous month, with forecast growth of 1.5%.

On an annualized basis, retail sales declined 2.9%. Analysts had expected them to decline by 5.4%. Sales of goods belonging to the non-food group increased by 6.8%. Fuel sales in the euro area rose by 3.7%. At the same time, sales of food products decreased by 1.1%. Retail sales in the European Union increased by 2.9% month-on-month in February. Compared to the same month in 2020, they decreased by 2.2%.

The leaders in terms of sales growth in monthly terms were such countries as Austria, Slovenia, and Italy. The largest decline was recorded in Malta.

Compared to February of the previous year, the highest growth rate of retail sales was observed in Belgium, Austria, and Croatia. At the same time, Portugal, Slovakia, and Malta showed the highest rates of decline in retail sales.

Police use water cannons on youth rally in Brussels park

The police of the Belgian capital in the evening with the help of water cannons were able to oust from the park of Brussels young people who had previously staged riots.

Earlier it was reported that about five thousand young people on Thursday gathered in the park Bois de la Cambre in Brussels for the “festival”, which was previously reported in social networks. The holiday was not sanctioned by the metropolitan administration, and restrictive measures continue to apply in Belgium in connection with a new outbreak of coronavirus. Despite the fact that the event turned out to be an April Fool’s joke, the young people gathered in the park refused to disperse and began to show aggression towards the police who arrived in the park.

The police managed to disperse the crowd in the park with water cannons. The guards also called on the young people through loudspeakers not to violate the restrictive measures and to disperse. Those who came to the festival threw bottles and sticks at the police. Now the situation in the park is calm, several ambulances have arrived, they will take the victims to the hospital.

Lockdown is illegal. Belgian court orders lifting of the quarantine

The Belgian authorities are obliged to cancel the quarantine measures that were introduced due to the coronavirus pandemic in a month-the court declared them illegal.

This is reported by the Belgian newspaper Le Soir.

The court of the first instance in Brussels issued the relevant ruling, granting the claim of the League of Human Rights, filed about three weeks ago. Representatives of the organization said that anti-coronavirus measures restrict fundamental freedoms in Belgium.

Recall that at the moment in Belgium, the work of restaurants, cultural and sports facilities is prohibited, classes are canceled in schools, and citizens are forbidden to rest abroad.

The court did not find a sufficient legal basis for restrictions — in the law of 2007, to which the Cabinet referred, they introduce, and each time extending the lockdown from October 2020, there are no such measures.

Therefore, the government of the kingdom was given 30 days to cancel them. For each day after the allotted time, the authorities will have to pay a fine of 5 thousand euros. The Cabinet of Ministers has the opportunity to challenge this decision.

We also wrote that in Belgium, dogs were taught to detect coronavirus cases by smell.

NATO fighters climbed 10 times during the day to intercept Russian aircraft

On Monday, March 29, NATO fighters took to the air ten times to escort Russian bombers and fighters over the North Atlantic, North Sea, Black, and Baltic Seas.

This is stated in a statement on the Alliance website.

NATO, in connection with the latest interception incidents, announced “an unusual level of RF air activity.”

Overall, NATO aircraft intercepted six different groups of Russian military aircraft near Alliance airspace in less than six hours.

“The interception of several Russian aviation groups demonstrates the readiness and ability of NATO forces to guard the skies of the Allies 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year,” said Brigadier General Andrew Hansen, deputy chief of staff at Allied Air Command.

In the Far North, Norwegian F-16s took to the air after radars spotted two groups of Russian military aircraft flying off the coast of Norway. Norwegian jets intercepted two bombers, which continued to fly south over the North Sea, forcing Britain and Belgium to raise their Typhoon and F-16 aircraft, respectively. On the same day, Norwegian F-16s intercepted two Tu-160 Blackjack bombers.

NATO’s radars also detected three Russian military aircraft near Allied airspace over the Black Sea. Turkish, Romanian, and Bulgarian fighter planes took to the skies to track Russian planes until they left the area. Separately, an Italian fighter intercepted a Russian Il-38 naval patrol aircraft, accompanied by fighters.

Russian military aircraft often do not transmit a code indicating their position and altitude, do not submit a flight plan, or do not communicate with air traffic controllers, posing a potential risk to civilian aircraft, NATO notes.

The Alliance adds that on Monday none of the Russian aircraft violated the airspace of NATO countries.

In Germany, predicted the “most severe” wave of the pandemic

The third wave of the pandemic in Germany may be “the most severe,” said Lothar Wheeler, head of the Robert Koch Institute. According to him, the next rampant coronavirus in the country is caused by the spread of the “British” strain of infection.

A couple of weeks ago, Wheeler acknowledged the onset of the third wave of the pandemic in Germany. The statement was made on the basis of the growing dynamics of coronavirus infections in the country.

Scientists of the institute noted that in January and February in Germany, there was a downward trend in COVID-19 diseases. In March, the situation changed. The indicators for the infection of citizens with the infection began to grow again. Experts then suggested that a new strain of the virus, which is characterized by a higher rate of spread, began to rage in the country.

Last week, the representative of the European Commission, Dana Spinant, said that European countries are covered by the third wave of the pandemic. According to her, somewhere the infection spreads gradually, somewhere at a rapid pace. Spirant stressed that the current situation suggests the need to speed up vaccination of the population. The statement of the representative of the European Commission was made against the background of an increase in the number of infections in Finland, Poland, France, Estonia, Italy, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Belgium, and other countries.