26th May is election day in Belgium where voting is compulsory — or would be if anyone actually checked.

There are three elections, all on the same day, for the European Parliament, the Federal Parliament and the regional Parliaments respectively. Being an EU, but not Belgian, citizen, I get to vote in only the EU Parliament election.

The Federal Parliament is the one from which the national government is drawn, which means that we will see the end of the current caretaker administration just as soon as a new coalition is formed.

I’m not holding my breath, though. Opinion polling suggests that the Flemish separatists of the N-VA are set to end up as the largest Flemish group in the Parliament and the Francophone parties are already saying that they want nothing to do with the N-VA.

The coalition negotiations could take a while.

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