November 15th is a day for Belgians to honor their royal family. This year, King’s Day as it is called, marked 15 years on the throne for King Albert II. It also marked 15 years after his brother, King Baudouin, passed away.
This morning, the Belgian royal family attended mass at Saint Michel’s in Brussels. All were in attendance, except for the younger royals and Queen Paola, who is said to be ill with the flu.
Later, Prime Minister Yves Leterme gave a speech honoring Albert, King of the Belgians.
“The monarchy may be anachronistic to some. For Belgium, at least, this is the right system,” he said.
“In 1993, King Albert succeeded Baudouin who was a major figure. Albert II has shown to be a king of transition.”
“The King is in communion with his people,” added Leterme.
Belgium celebrated King’s Day just months after the Belgian government nearly collapsed, and calls rose for splitting the country between the French speaking Walloons and the Dutch speaking Flemish.