|President of the Belgian Chamber of Representatives|
20 July 2010
|Preceded by||Patrick Dewael|
|Minister of Defence|
12 July 1999 – 21 December 2007
|Prime Minister||Guy Verhofstadt|
|Preceded by||Jean-Pol Poncelet|
|Succeeded by||Pieter De Crem|
|Minister of the Civil Service|
23 June 1995 – 12 July 1999
|Prime Minister||Jean-Luc Dehaene|
|Preceded by||Louis Tobback|
|Succeeded by||Luc Van den Bossche|
18 August 1955 |
|Political party||Socialist Party|
|Alma mater||Free University of Brussels, French|
André M.J.Gh. Flahaut is a Belgian politician. He was born on 18 August 1955 in Walhain, then in the province of Brabant and now in the province of Walloon Brabant. Flahaut studied political sciences and public administration at the Université Libre de Bruxelles.
He joined the Socialist Party in 1973. From 1989 to 1995 he served in various posts in the administration of Walloon Brabant. He has served in the local council of Walhain, in the provincial council of Walloon Brabant and as deputy governor of Walloon Brabant.
From 1995 he served as Minister for the Civil Service in the second government of Jean-Luc Dehaene. Since 12 July 1999 he has served as Minister of Defence in both governments of Guy Verhofstadt, Verhofstadt I (1999–2003) and Verhofstadt II (2003–2007).
In 2009, he demanded the recall of the Belgian ambassador to the Holy See after controversy over comments by Pope Benedict XVI, who claimed that condoms promoted AIDS. Flahaut commented, "The comments made by the pope, who is a head of state, are sufficiently grave, inappropriate, and inadmissible that we should mark, in a symbolic but very strong fashion, our displeasure and disapproval."
As of 20 July 2010 he was elected President of the Belgian Chamber of Representatives.
Anti-semitic charges and subsequent lawsuit
Because of charges of antisemitism brought by the Coordination Committee of Jewish Organizations in Belgium (CCOJB) and Joël Rubinfeld, André Flahaut decided to lodge a complaint of defamation in June 2008, demanding € 25000 in damages and official apology. The Court of First Instance of Brussels in a verdict returned in October 2009 agreed with André Flahaut on apology, but not on the damages. The CCOJB and Joël Rubinfeld are appealing the decision. CCOJB and André Flahaut are working on compromise solution. New CCOJB leader Prof. Maurice Sosnowski commented on the lawsuit: “Rubinfeld was right to accuse Flahaut and right to appeal the first circuit’s sentence, but a reasonable compromise is better than a long and uncertain procedure.”
- RTL Newmedia. "Flahaut: "L'ambassadeur belge doit quitter le Vatican"". Rtl.be. Retrieved 2012-01-17.
- "Zoom Région - Brabant wallon - NIVELLES - André Flahaut gagne un procès en diffamation". Zoomregion.be. 2009-10-23. Retrieved 2012-01-17.
- Fishman, Aidan (2011-12-26). "Jewish leaders in Belgium s... JPost - Jewish World - Jewish News". Jpost.com. Retrieved 2012-01-17.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to André Flahaut.|
|Minister of the Civil Service
Luc Van den Bossche
|Minister of Defence
Pieter De Crem
|President of the Chamber of Representatives