1,000 students debate Emmanuel Macron and Charles Michel

Some 1,000 students from UCLouvain, Université Saint-Louis Brussels, KU Leuven and the Royal Military Academy participated in the debate with the French president and Belgian prime minister on 20 November.

UCLouvain students in political science, international relations, public administration and European studies, as well as students from the Université Saint-Louis Brussels, KU Leuven and the Royal Military Academy, took advantage of the state visit to Belgium of Emmanuel Macron, who stopped in Louvain-la-Neuve on 20 November for a live debate with nearly 1,000 students led by Professor Michel Liégeois and RTBF journalist Johanne Montay.

Moderated by Rector Vincent Blondel, who welcomed his distinguished guests, the debate was courteous but incisive and the students were immune to the status of their teachers for a day. A multispeed Europe, pan-European movements, the role of lobbies, universities, Iran’s nuclear weapons, populism – some questions were sharp and well-informed, others activist and imprecise in the eyes of the French president, but they always echoed enthusiasm. President Macron answered clearly, and at times with humour and irony. Johanne Montay, for her part, breathed life into the debate, drawing out both the prime minister and his French guest.

Following the debate, the guests mingled with the crowd, then proceeded to the L Museum with the many guests invited to lunch with Emmanuel and Brigitte Macron and Their Majesties King Philippe and Queen Mathilde.

Copy photos : Eric Herchaft/Reporters

Published on November 21, 2018