Racing: Revelry the main contender as Flanders field renews rivalry: Richard Edmondson at Waregem tastes the carnival spirit before the Belgian Grand National

IT STARTED on cobbled streets and today the Grand Steeple Chase of Flanders (Belgian Grand National) will ensure spectators return to work with cobbled minds.

King of a divided country: Belgium must find another path to the unity Baudouin offered, says Jonathan Eyal

WITH KING BAUDOUIN, the Belgians at the weekend buried an entire generation of leaders, people who instinctively believed that reason, moderation and vision must triumph. Albert II, his successor due to be sworn today, inherits a transformed state, a country that epitomises everything both good and bad on the European continent.

Belgians yearn for one nation: Politicians accused of following 'uncertain path' of separatism

THOUSANDS of Belgians marched on Brussels yesterday in one of the largest demonstrations ever seen in the city. It was a protest against the division of their country and in celebration of a nation that some fear is in danger of disappearing.

Out of Belgium: Small-screen airing of national drama

BRUSSELS - Viewers in the suburb of Wemmel-Drogenbos were told that, from today, they would not be able to watch their favourite French-language television programmes. The Flemish government, which has a constitutional duty to safeguard Flemish culture, was going to block the signal to prevent 'cultural contamination' of the airways.

Belgian coalition survives budget rift

THE constitutional crisis over elements of the Maastricht treaty that almost sank the Belgian government was resolved yesterday when the warring coalition agreed a budget. Debate over how to cut the budget deficit in line with the criteria for economic and monetary union had created a political stalemate. Gambling his reputation as the consummate deal-maker, the Prime Minister, Jean-Luc Dehaene, last week tendered his government's resignation to King Baudouin.

Baudouin strives to avert chaos: Regional splits and budget row bring Belgium to breaking point

KING BAUDOUIN spent yesterday trying to avert the chaos that has been building for four months and threatens to destroy Belgium's economic security and international reputation as a model European state.

Further apart

BRUSSELS (Reuter) - Belgium's parliament yesterday approved by just two votes a sweeping state reform which will lead the country into a new federal era, further separating Dutch-speaking Flanders and French-speaking Wallonia. The coalition government mustered 144 votes - only two more than the two-thirds majority of 142 required - to amend the first article of the Belgian constitution. The new deal grants more autonomy to Flanders in the north and Wallonia in the south.

Belgium moves to federal state

BRUSSELS - Belgium yesterday took the first step towards constitutional change in an effort to stop the country tearing itself apart, but hardline Flemish nationalists hope the reform will be but a stage on the road to independence, writes Sarah Lambert.

Europe 1993: City with a mission to save: Antwerp - commerce and culture

NEXT YEAR, Antwerp becomes the latest European city of culture, following Glasgow, Dublin and Madrid. But the celebrations come at a time when many think the city should be asking difficult questions of itself.
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Emergency call 'started off dumb, but got pretty serious'

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people

Britain First criticised for using actress's memory to draw attention to their 'hate-filled home page'

Arts and Entertainment
Liam and Zayn of One Direction play with a chimpanzee on the set of their new video for 'Steal My Girl'
music

Animal welfare charities have urged the boy band to cut the scenes

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Russell Brand was in typically combative form during his promotional interview with Newsnight's Evan Davis
people

Thought you'd seen it all after the Jeremy Paxman interview?

Arts and Entertainment
On The Apprentice, “serious” left the room many moons ago and yet still we watch
tv

Greatest mystery about the hit BBC1 show is how it continues to be made at all, writes Grace Dent

Voices
Funds raised from the sale of poppies help the members of the armed forces with financial difficulties
voicesLindsey German: The best way of protecting soldiers is to stop sending them into conflicts
Arts and Entertainment
A scene from David Ayer's 'Fury'
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"History is violent," says the US Army tank commander Don "Wardaddy" Collier

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The Edge and his wife, Morleigh Steinberg, at the Academy Awards in 2014
peopleGuitarist faces protests over plan to build mansions in Malibu
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peopleFox presenter gives her less than favourable view of women in politics
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One bedroom terraced house for sale, Richmond Avenue, Islington, London N1. On with Winkworths for £275,000.
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Wilko Johnson, now the bad news: musician splits with manager after police investigate assault claims

Wilko Johnson, now the bad news

Former Dr Feelgood splits with manager after police investigate assault claims
Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands ahead of the US midterm elections

Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands

The Senator for Colorado is for gay rights, for abortion rights – and in the Republicans’ sights as they threaten to take control of the Senate next month
New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

Evidence found of contact between Easter Islanders and South America
Cerys Matthews reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of Dylan Thomas

Cerys Matthews on Dylan Thomas

The singer reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of the famous Welsh poet
DIY is not fun and we've finally realised this as a nation

Homebase closures: 'DIY is not fun'

Homebase has announced the closure of one in four of its stores. Nick Harding, who never did know his awl from his elbow, is glad to see the back of DIY
The Battle of the Five Armies: Air New Zealand releases new Hobbit-inspired in-flight video

Air New Zealand's wizard in-flight video

The airline has released a new Hobbit-inspired clip dubbed "The most epic safety video ever made"
Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month - but can you stomach the sweetness?

Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month

The combination of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg (and no actual pumpkin), now flavours everything from lattes to cream cheese in the US
11 best sonic skincare brushes

11 best sonic skincare brushes

Forget the flannel - take skincare to the next level by using your favourite cleanser with a sonic facial brush
Paul Scholes column: I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo

Paul Scholes column

I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Jones and Rojo
Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

While other sports are stalked by corruption, we are an easy target for the critics
Jamie Roberts exclusive interview: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Jamie Roberts: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Wales centre says he’s not coming home but is looking to establish himself at Racing Métro
How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker