Ghent is a city and a municipality in the Flemish Region of Belgium. It is the capital and largest city of the East Flanders province, the second largest municipality in Belgium, after Antwerp; the city started as a settlement at the confluence of the Rivers Scheldt and Leie and in the Late Middle Ages became one of the largest and richest cities of northern Europe, with some 50,000 people in 1300. It is a university city; the municipality comprises the city of Ghent proper and the surrounding suburbs of Afsnee, Drongen, Ledeberg, Mendonk, Sint-Amandsberg, Sint-Denijs-Westrem, Sint-Kruis-Winkel and Zwijnaarde. With 260,467 inhabitants in the beginning of 2018, Ghent is Belgium's second largest municipality by number of inhabitants; the metropolitan area, including the outer commuter zone, covers an area of 1,205 km2 and has a total population of 594,582 as of 1 January 2008, which ranks it as the fourth most populous in Belgium. The current mayor of Ghent, Mathias De Clercq is from the liberal & democratic party Open VLD.
The ten-day-long Ghent Festival is attended by about 1 -- 1.5 million visitors. Archaeological evidence shows human presence in the region of the confluence of Scheldt and Leie going back as far as the Stone Age and the Iron Age. Most historians believe that the older name for Ghent,'Ganda', is derived from the Celtic word ganda which means confluence. Other sources connect its name with an obscure deity named Gontia. There are no written records of the Roman period, but archaeological research confirms that the region of Ghent was further inhabited; when the Franks invaded the Roman territories from the end of the 4th century and well into the 5th century, they brought their language with them and Celtic and Latin were replaced by Old Dutch. Around 650, Saint Amand founded two abbeys in Ghent: Saint Bavo's Abbey; the city grew from the abbeys and a commercial centre. Around 800, Louis the Pious, son of Charlemagne, appointed Einhard, the biographer of Charlemagne, as abbot of both abbeys. In 851 and 879, the city was however plundered twice by the Vikings.
Within the protection of the County of Flanders, the city recovered and flourished from the 11th century, growing to become a small city-state. By the 13th century, Ghent was the biggest city in Europe north of the Alps after Paris. Within the city walls lived up to 65,000 people; the belfry and the towers of the Saint Bavo Cathedral and Saint Nicholas' Church are just a few examples of the skyline of the period. The rivers flowed in an area; these rich grass'meersen' were ideally suited for herding sheep, the wool of, used for making cloth. During the Middle Ages Ghent was the leading city for cloth; the wool industry established at Bruges, created the first European industrialized zone in Ghent in the High Middle Ages. The mercantile zone was so developed that wool had to be imported from Scotland and England; this was one of the reasons for Flanders' good relationship with England. Ghent was the birthplace of John of Duke of Lancaster. Trade with England suffered during the Hundred Years' War.
The city recovered in the 15th century, when Flanders was united with neighbouring provinces under the Dukes of Burgundy. High taxes led to a rebellion and the Battle of Gavere in 1453, in which Ghent suffered a terrible defeat at the hands of Philip the Good. Around this time the centre of political and social importance in the Low Countries started to shift from Flanders to Brabant, although Ghent continued to play an important role. With Bruges, the city led two revolts against Maximilian of Austria, the first monarch of the House of Habsburg to rule Flanders. In 1500, Juana of Castile gave birth to Charles V, who became Holy Roman King of Spain. Although native to Ghent, he punished the city after the 1539 Revolt of Ghent and obliged the city's nobles to walk in front of the Emperor barefoot with a noose around the neck. Saint Bavo Abbey was abolished, torn down, replaced with a fortress for Royal Spanish troops. Only a small portion of the abbey was spared demolition; the late 16th and the 17th centuries brought devastation because of the Eighty Years' War.
The war ended the role of Ghent as a centre of international importance. In 1745, the city was captured by French forces during the War of the Austrian Succession before being returned to the Empire of Austria under the House of Habsburg following the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle in 1748, when this part of Flanders became known as the Austrian Netherlands until 1815, the exile of the French Emperor Napoleon I, the end of the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars and the peace treaties arrived at by the Congress of Vienna. In the 18th and 19th centuries, the textile industry flourished again in Ghent. Lieven Bauwens, having smuggled the industrial and factory machine plans out of England, introduced the first mechanical weaving machine on the European continent in 1800; the Treaty of Ghent, negotiated here and adopted on Christmas Eve 1814, formally ended the War of 1812 between Great Britain and the United States. After the Battle of Waterloo and Flanders ruled from the House of Habs
Belgium the Kingdom of Belgium, is a country in Western Europe. It is bordered by the Netherlands to the north, Germany to the east, Luxembourg to the southeast, France to the southwest, the North Sea to the northwest, it has a population of more than 11.4 million. The capital and largest city is Brussels; the sovereign state is a federal constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary system. Its institutional organisation is structured on both regional and linguistic grounds, it is divided into three autonomous regions: Flanders in the north, Wallonia in the south, the Brussels-Capital Region. Brussels is the smallest and most densely populated region, as well as the richest region in terms of GDP per capita. Belgium is home to two main linguistic groups or Communities: the Dutch-speaking Flemish Community, which constitutes about 59 percent of the population, the French-speaking Community, which comprises about 40 percent of all Belgians. A small German-speaking Community, numbering around one percent, exists in the East Cantons.
The Brussels-Capital Region is bilingual, although French is the dominant language. Belgium's linguistic diversity and related political conflicts are reflected in its political history and complex system of governance, made up of six different governments. Belgium was part of an area known as the Low Countries, a somewhat larger region than the current Benelux group of states that included parts of northern France and western Germany, its name is derived after the Roman province of Gallia Belgica. From the end of the Middle Ages until the 17th century, the area of Belgium was a prosperous and cosmopolitan centre of commerce and culture. Between the 16th and early 19th centuries, Belgium served as the battleground between many European powers, earning the moniker the "Battlefield of Europe", a reputation strengthened by both world wars; the country emerged in 1830 following the Belgian Revolution. Belgium participated in the Industrial Revolution and, during the course of the 20th century, possessed a number of colonies in Africa.
The second half of the 20th century was marked by rising tensions between the Dutch-speaking and the French-speaking citizens fueled by differences in language and culture and the unequal economic development of Flanders and Wallonia. This continuing antagonism has led to several far-reaching reforms, resulting in a transition from a unitary to a federal arrangement during the period from 1970 to 1993. Despite the reforms, tensions between the groups have remained, if not increased. Unemployment in Wallonia is more than double that of Flanders. Belgium is one of the six founding countries of the European Union and hosts the official seats of the European Commission, the Council of the European Union, the European Council, as well as a seat of the European Parliament in the country's capital, Brussels. Belgium is a founding member of the Eurozone, NATO, OECD, WTO, a part of the trilateral Benelux Union and the Schengen Area. Brussels hosts several of the EU's official seats as well as the headquarters of many major international organizations such as NATO.
Belgium is a developed country, with an advanced high-income economy. It has high standards of living, quality of life, education, is categorized as "very high" in the Human Development Index, it ranks as one of the safest or most peaceful countries in the world. The name "Belgium" is derived from Gallia Belgica, a Roman province in the northernmost part of Gaul that before Roman invasion in 100 BC, was inhabited by the Belgae, a mix of Celtic and Germanic peoples. A gradual immigration by Germanic Frankish tribes during the 5th century brought the area under the rule of the Merovingian kings. A gradual shift of power during the 8th century led the kingdom of the Franks to evolve into the Carolingian Empire; the Treaty of Verdun in 843 divided the region into Middle and West Francia and therefore into a set of more or less independent fiefdoms which, during the Middle Ages, were vassals either of the King of France or of the Holy Roman Emperor. Many of these fiefdoms were united in the Burgundian Netherlands of the 15th centuries.
Emperor Charles V extended the personal union of the Seventeen Provinces in the 1540s, making it far more than a personal union by the Pragmatic Sanction of 1549 and increased his influence over the Prince-Bishopric of Liège. The Eighty Years' War divided the Low Countries into the northern United Provinces and the Southern Netherlands; the latter were ruled successively by the Spanish and the Austrian Habsburgs and comprised most of modern Belgium. This was the theatre of most Franco-Spanish and Franco-Austrian wars during the 17th and 18th centuries. Following the campaigns of 1794 in the French Revolutionary Wars, the Low Countries—including territories that were never nominally under Habsburg rule, such as the Prince-Bishopric of Liège—were annexed by the French First Republic, ending Austrian rule in the region; the reunification of the Low Countries as the United Kingdom of the Netherlands occurred at the dissolution of the First French Empire in 1815, after the defeat of Napo
The Senate is one of the two chambers of the bicameral Federal Parliament of Belgium, the other being the Chamber of Representatives. It is considered to be the "upper house" of the Federal Parliament. Created in 1831 as a chamber equal to the Chamber of Representatives, it has undergone several reforms in the past, most notably in 1993 and the reform of 2014 following the sixth Belgian state reform; the 2014 elections were the first ones without a direct election of senators. Instead, the new Senate is composed of members of community and regional parliaments and co-opted members, it is a chamber of the communities and regions and serves as a platform for discussion and reflection about matters between the different language communities. The Senate now only plays a minor role in the federal legislative process. Since the reform, it only holds about ten plenary sessions a year. After the Belgian Revolution, the National Congress decided about the Belgian Constitution and the state structure. A bicameral Parliament was chosen over a unicameral one, due to fears of more democratic and progressive decisions in the Chamber of Representatives, as was seen in France.
Thus the Senate served as a more elite body. To be eligible, one had to pay 1000 francs, which meant that at that time, only about 4000 persons could be elected. In the past, French was the sole language of government in Belgium, it was not until 1913 that Dutch was used in Parliament, by the liberal senator Emmanuel De Cloedt, which the French-speaking pro-Catholic newspaper La Libre Belgique described as séparatisme parlementaire; the Flemish nationalist party New Flemish Alliance, among other Flemish parties, said in 2010 that they want to abolish the Senate. The French-speaking parties, want to keep the Senate. During the 2010–2011 Belgian government formation, it has been decided that the Senate would no longer be directly elected and instead become a meeting place for members of the various regional parliaments. Since the sixth state reform, the Senate consists of 60 members. 50 are elected by the community and regional parliaments, 10 are co-opted members. Prior to the Belgian federal election of May 21, 1995, there were 184 elected senators.
The fourth state reform, which took place in 1993, revised the Belgian Constitution, reduced the number of senators to 71 and replaced the provincial senators, who were appointed by the Provincial Councils, with Community senators. The change took effect following the May 1995 federal election. Of the total of 71 elected senators, 40 were elected directly, 21 appointed by the community parliaments and 10 senators were co-opted; the overall distribution of seats between parties was however determined by the results of the direct election. The sixth state reform, taking effect on the May 25, 2014 election, reduced the number of senators from 71 to 60 and abolished the direct election. Starting with the elections of 25 May 2014, 50 senators are appointed by and from the community and regional parliaments: 29 senators appointed by the Flemish Parliament from the Flemish Parliament or from the Dutch language group of the Parliament of the Brussels-Capital Region 10 senators appointed by and from the Parliament of the French Community 8 senators appointed by and from the Parliament of Wallonia 2 senators appointed by and from the French-language group of the Parliament of the Brussels-Capital Region 1 senator appointed by and from the Parliament of the German-speaking CommunityPreviously, a total of 21 were appointed by and from the Community parliaments: 10 by the Flemish Parliament, 10 by the Parliament of the French Community and one by the Parliament of the German-speaking Community.
The German-speaking senator is chosen by plurality. They were distributed using the results of the direct election between the parties that have at least one directly elected senator, insofar as they had enough seats in the Flemish Parliament or the Parliament of the French Community; these Community senators hold a double mandate. They are appointed to the Senate for a term of 4 years, but as the Community parliaments are renewed every 5 years, it is possible that regional elections take place during these 4 years. In this event, the Community senators who are not re-elected to their Community parliament are replaced by a member belonging to the same fraction, insofar as that fraction has enough seats left in the Flemish Parliament or the Parliament of the French Community, as the case may be, following the regional elections to replace those Community senators. In order to ensure that the Senate can continue to exercise its functions when the Community parliaments are dissolved, the Community senators remain in office until the parliament of their Community either confirms their mandate or appoints new Community senators.
Ten senators are co-opted, meaning they are elected by their peers: six by the Dutch-language group and four by the French-language group. These seats are distributed proportionally between parties based on the results of the direct election of the Chamber of Representatives. In 1893, the co-opted members were included in the Constitution as a new category of senators, it was intended to allow the senators to elect a number of experts or members of representative organisations to join them to enhance the quality of debate and legislation.
Kortrijk is a Belgian city and municipality in the Flemish province of West Flanders. It is largest city of the judicial and administrative arrondissement of Kortrijk; the wider municipality comprises the city of Kortrijk proper and the villages of Aalbeke, Bissegem, Kooigem and Rollegem. Kortrijk is part of the cross-border Lille-Kortrijk-Tournai metropolitan area; the city is on 42 km southwest of Ghent and 25 km northeast of Lille. Mouscron in Wallonia is just south of Kortrijk. Kortrijk originated from a Gallo-Roman town, Cortoriacum, at a crossroads near the Leie river and two Roman roads. In the Middle Ages, Kortrijk grew thanks to the flax and wool industry with France and England and became one of the biggest and richest cities in Flanders; the city is referred to as City of Groeninge or City of the Golden Spurs, referring to the Battle of Courtrai or the Battle of the Golden Spurs which took place on 11 July 1302 on the Fields of Groeninge in Kortrijk. In 1820, the Treaty of Kortrijk was signed, which laid out the current borders between France and Belgium.
Throughout the 19th and 20th century, the flax industry flourished and remains important within the Belgian textile industry today. Kortrijk is the largest city in southern West Flanders, with several hospitals, colleges and a university. Kortrijk was the first city in Belgium with the Korte Steenstraat; the Roman name Cortoriacum meant in the settlement near the curb in the river. There is mention of Cortoracum in some Litterature, its name evolved to Cortrycke and Kortrijk. The French Called it Courtrai. Findings from an archeological digging in 1950 seem to indicate that the vicus was used as an encampment/base by the romans during their invasion of Britain in 43ad. Cortoriacum was a larger Gallo-Roman vicus of civitas Menapiorum at an important crossroads near the Lys river of the Roman roads linking Tongeren and Cassel and Tournai and Oudenburg, it was first mentioned in a document from the 4th or 5th century called Notitia Dignitatum where the Cortoriacenses Troops were mentioned. In the 9th century, Baldwin II, Count of Flanders established fortifications against the Vikings.
The town gained its city charter in 1190 from Count of Flanders. The population growth required new defensive walls. Several local places still refer to physical parts of the Defensive Structures around Kortrijk. In the 13th century, the battles between Fernando of Portugal, Count of Flanders and his first cousin, King Louis VIII of France, led to the destruction of the city; the Counts of Flanders had it rebuilt soon after. To promote industry and weaving in the town, Countess of Flanders exempted settlers in Kortrijk from property tax. From that time, Kortrijk gained great importance as a centre of linen production. In 1302, the population of Bruges started a successful uprising against the French, who had annexed Flanders a couple of years earlier. On 18 May the French population in that city was massacred, an event; the famous ensuing Battle of Courtrai or the Battle of the Golden Spurs between the Flemish people commoners and farmers, Philip the Fair’s knights took place near Kortrijk on 11 July, resulting in a victory for Flanders.
This date is now remembered as a national holiday by the whole Flemish community. Following a new uprising by the Flemish in 1323, but this time against their own Count Louis I, the French invaded again; these Flemish acquisitions were consolidated by the French at the Battle of Cassel. Louis I’s son, Louis II Philip van Artevelde regained the city in 1381 but lost it again the following year at the Battle of Roosebeke, resulting in a new wave of plundering and destruction. Most of the 15th century was prosperous under the Dukes of Burgundy, until the death of the Burgundian heiress, Mary of Burgundy, in 1482, which ushered in renewed fighting with France; the 16th century was marked by the confrontations engendered by the Reformation and the uprising of the Netherlands against Spain. Louis XIV’s reign saw Kortrijk occupied by the French five times in sixty years and its former fortifications razed; the Treaty of Utrecht assigned the whole area to Austria. After the French Revolution and the Napoleonic era, the textile industry, based on flax, the general economy of the city could prosper again.
Kortrijk was bombed in the summer of 1917, but was liberated by the British Army the following year. During World War II the city was an important railway hub for the German army, for this reason was the target of several allied air-strikes. On 21 July 1944 around 300 Avro Lancasters dropped over 5,000 bombs on the city centre. Many historical buildings on the central square, as well as the old railway station, were destroyed. See Battle of Courtrai After the 1977 fusion the city is made up of: I Kortrijk II Heule III Bissegem IV Marke V Aalbeke VI Rollegem VII Bellegem VIII Kooigem The metropolitan area, including the outer commuter zone consists of Kuurne, Wevelgem and Harelbeke. Although these municipalities have strong morphologic ties with Kortrijk, they aren't part of the city. Kortrijk has an oceanic climate (
A municipal council is the legislative body of a municipality such as a city council or a town council. In spite of enormous differences in populations, each of the communes of the French Republic possesses a mayor and a municipal council, which manage the commune from the mairie, with the same powers no matter the size of the commune and council; the one exception is the city of Paris, where the city police is in the hands of the central state, not in the hands of the mayor of Paris. This uniformity of status is a clear legacy of the French Revolution, which wanted to do away with the local idiosyncrasies and tremendous differences of status that existed in the kingdom of France; the size of a commune still matters, however, in two domains: French law determines the size of the municipal council according to the population of the commune. Lists of communes of France Commune List of fifteen largest French metropolitan areas by population Established as the Sanitary Board in 1883, the Municipal Council in Hong Kong Island and Kowloon provided municipal services to the covered regions in the British Hong Kong.
Partial elections were allowed in 1887, though enabling selected persons to vote for members of the Board. The Board was reconstituted in 1935 and hence renamed as Urban Council in the following year after the government had passed the Urban Council Ordinance. Democratisation had been implemented, allowing universal suffrage to happen throughout its development. Two years after the Transfer of sovereignty over Hong Kong, the Council was disbanded in 1999 by the Chief Executive of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. All members of the council were elected through universal suffrage by the time of the dissolution; the counterpart of the Municipal Council serving the New Territories was the Regional Council established as the Provisional Regional Council in 1986. The functional select committees, district committees, sub-committees constituted the entire Regional Council. All members were elected from the constituencies and district boards. Both of the Municipal Councils in Hong Kong are now defunct.
See Nagar Palika for municipalities of India. The Municipal Council in Moldova is the governing body in five municipalities: Chișinău, Bălți, Tiraspol and Bendery; the Municipal Council serves as a consultative body with some powers of general policy determination. It is composed of a determined number of counsellors elected every four years, representing political parties and independent counsellors. Once elected, counsellors may form fractions inside of the Municipal Council. Last regional elections of local public administration held in Bălți in June 2007, brought to the power the Party of Communists of the Republic of Moldova, which holds 21 mandates, 11 mandates are held by representatives of other parties, 3 mandates by independents. There are two fractions in the Municipal Council: "Meleag" fraction; the Mayor of the municipality is elected for four years. In Bălți, Vasile Panciuc is the incumbent from 2001 and was re-elected twice: in 2003 during the anticipated elections, in 2007. In Chișinău, the last mayor elections had to be repeated three times, because of the low rate of participation.
As a result, Dorin Chirtoacă, won the last mayor elections in Chișinău. In the Netherlands the municipal council is the elected assembly of the municipality, it consists of between 45 members who are elected by the citizens once every four years. The council's main tasks are setting the city's policies and overseeing the execution of those policies by the municipality's executive board; the municipal council municipal board, is the highest governing body of the municipality in Norway. The municipal council sets the scope of municipal activity, takes major decisions, delegates responsibility; the council is led by a mayor s divided into an executive council and a number of committees, each responsible for a subsection of tasks. It is not uncommon for some members of the council to sit in the county councils too, but rare that they hold legislative or Government office, without leave of absence; the municipal council dates back to 1837 with the creation of the Formannskabsdistrikt. In cities the council is called a city council.
In the Republic of China, a municipal council represents a special municipality. Members of the councils are elected through municipal elections held every 4-5 years. Councils for the special municipalities in Taiwan are Taipei City Council, New Taipei City Council, Taichung City Council, Tainan City Council, Kaohsiung City Council and Taoyuan City Council. City council Town council