Belgian minister Galant steps down over security report

Accusations she lied about an EU report criticising security at Brussels airport a year ago

Belgian minister of mobility Jacqueline Galant: she previously said her office had not been aware of a critical report about Brussels airport in March 2015, a year before the Islamic State attacks. Photograph: Dirk Waem/AFP/Getty Images

Belgian minister of mobility Jacqueline Galant: she previously said her office had not been aware of a critical report about Brussels airport in March 2015, a year before the Islamic State attacks. Photograph: Dirk Waem/AFP/Getty Images

 

Belgium’s transport minister resigned on Friday following opposition accusations she lied about an EU report that criticised security at Brussels airport a year before last month’s Islamic State suicide bombings.

Jacqueline Galant had previously maintained before parliament that her office had not been aware of a critical report sent in March 2015 by EU officials. Opposition parties said they had emails proving the contrary. European Commission officials declined comment on the report but noted they carry out regular checks on security at European airports and raise any concerns with national authorities.

“A summary of the report had been discussed and sent to the minister’s cabinet in June 2015,” prime minister Charles Michel told a news conference after accepting Ms Galant’s resignation. “I cannot accept that parliament was not made aware of this important point yesterday,” he added. He would appoint a replacement as soon as possible, he said. – (Reuters)