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EU farmers plan new protest in Brussels on 26 February

EU farmers are planning another protest on 26 February, intending to gather at the Schuman roundabout in Brussels from 11.00 a.m.

Police plan to close off the Rue de la Loi between Schuman and the small roundabout (R20) after 6 a.m. Several roads bordering Rue de la Loi, the main thoroughfare of the European quarter, as well as the Reyers tunnel and the Cinquantenaire Park tunnel will be inaccessible to cars heading into the city centre.

The Fédération Wallonne de l’Agriculture (FWA), Boerenbond, MAP, the Fédération des Jeunes Agriculteurs (FJA) and the European Coordination Via Campesina (ECVC) have already confirmed their participation in next Monday’s action. Details on the number of expected demonstrators are not yet available.

The farmers are demanding an end to free trade agreements, a halt to negotiations on the EU-Mercosur agreement and the guarantee of a strong Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) to support agri-environmental practices. The ECVC said in a press release:

In response to the latest farmers’ protests, the Commission has decided to put an end to measures and legislation aimed at protecting the environment and biodiversity. Once again, EU policymakers have failed to listen to the voice of the majority of farmers, preferring instead to put forward proposals designed to appease the interests of agribusiness.

Over the past few weeks, farmers across Belgium and elsewhere in Europe have been taking to the streets to express their discontent.

Farmers are frustrated with the latest decisions taken by the European Commission in response to their protests in early February, which were held to highlight the problems the sector says they face: low profits, too much bureaucracy and concerns about the financial sustainability of family farms.

Farmer marches on tractors provoked serious traffic disruptions, and grocery shop shelves were often empty as a result of blocked distribution centres.

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