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Pierre Harmel

pierre harmelin, pierre harmel's ranch
Pierre Charles José Marie, Count Harmel 16 March 1911 – 15 November 2009 was a Belgian lawyer, Christian Democratic politician and diplomat Harmel served eight months as the 40th Prime Minister of Belgium


  • 1 Early life
  • 2 Political career
    • 21 Early political career
    • 22 School War
    • 23 Minister of Justice, Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs
    • 24 Later career
  • 3 Personal life
  • 4 Honours
  • 5 Bibliography
  • 6 References
  • 7 External links

Early life

He was born in Uccle, son of father Charles Harmel and mother Eusibie André He studied law at the University of Liège Liège, where he obtained the titles of Doctor of Laws and Master of Social Science in 1933 During his studies, he was active in the Association catholique belge, of which he became the chairman in 1938

Mobilized in 1940, he took part in the 18 days Campaign In 1947, he was appointed professor of Law at the University of Liège

Political career

Early political career

Member of the PSC-CVP since its creation in 1945, Harmel was elected deputy for the first time in the parliamentary elections of 17 February 1946 He would keep his seat without interruption until 1971

Harmel represented Belgium at the fourth session of the General Assembly of the United Nations in 1949 He subsequently was member of several governments in the 1950s and 1960s

School War

Main article: Second Schools' War

During his period as Minister of Education 8 June 1950 until 22 April 1954, Harmel increased the wages of teachers in private ie Catholic schools and introduced laws linking the subsidies for private schools to the number of pupils These measures were perceived by the secularists ie the anti-clerical Liberals and Socialists as a declaration of war When the 1954 elections brought to power a coalition of Socialists and Liberals, the new Education Minister, Leo Collard, immediately set out to reverse the measures taken by his predecessor, sparking mass protests by the Catholic bloc A compromise was eventually found by the next government a Catholic minority government led by Gaston Eyskens, and the "School War" was concluded by 6 November 1958 School Pact André Molitor was one of the chief architects of the school pact

Minister of Justice, Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs

Harmel was Minister of Justice in the second government led by Gaston Eyskens 23 June 1958 – 6 November 1958, and then Minister of Culture 6 November 1958 – 3 September 1960 and Minister of the Civil Service 3 September 1960 – 25 April 1961 in the third Eyskens cabinet

Prime Minister of Belgium from 28 July 1965 until 19 March 1966, Harmel led a coalition comprising Christian Democrats and Socialists Finally, he was Minister of Foreign Affairs in the Liberal-Christian Democratic coalition led by Paul Vanden Boeynants 19 March 1966 – 7 February 1968 As Foreign Minister he chaired the opening meeting of the enlargement negotiations between the EEC and the four applicants for Community membership in June 1970 Indeed Harmel's opening statement to the enlargement conference has since formed the basis of the Community opening position for future enlargement discussions

As Minister of Foreign Affairs, he submitted a report titled "Future Tasks of the Alliance" to the NATO council of ministers The report, which was approved by the council in December 1967, contained the so-called "Harmel Doctrine" It advocated a strong defence combined with good diplomatic relations with the countries of the Warsaw Pact The Harmel Doctrine helped to pave the way for the East-West détente of the early 1970s, which led to the 1975 Helsinki Summit and the creation of the OSCE Harmel himself visited several Warsaw Pact countries

Later career

After 25 years in the Chamber of Deputies, Harmel was Senator from 1971 until 1977 He was made a Minister of State from 1973 In 1988, he was awarded an honorary doctorate at the Catholic University of Louvain, and in 1991, was raised into the Belgian nobility by King Baudouin with the hereditary title of Count Harmel Dutch: graaf Harmel

Personal life

Harmel was married to Marie-Claire Van Gehuchten from 22 May 1946 Together they had 6 children, four sons and two daughters: Harmel died on 15 November 2009 at the age of 98


  •  Belgium: Croix de Guerre
  •  Belgium: Minister of state, by Royal Decree
  •  Belgium: Member of the Royal Academy
  •  Belgium: Grand Cordon in the Order of Leopold
  •  Belgium: Grand Officer in the Order of Leopold II
  • Knight Grand Cross in the Order of Saints Michael and George
  • Commander in the National Order of the Leopard


  • Vincent Dujardin, Pierre Harmel, Brussels, Le Cri 2004


  1. ^ a b Pierre Harmel 1911–2009 – website ODIS Dutch language
  2. ^ https://mobilenytimescom/2009/11/18/world/europe/18harmelhtml
  3. ^ http://wwwars-moriendibe/harmelhtm
  4. ^ http://wwwars-moriendibe/harmelhtm
  5. ^ http://wwwars-moriendibe/harmelhtm
  6. ^ http://wwwars-moriendibe/harmelhtm
  7. ^ http://wwwars-moriendibe/harmelhtm
  8. ^ http://wwwars-moriendibe/harmelhtm
  9. ^ http://wwwars-moriendibe/harmelhtm

External links

  • Pierre Harmel on website of Belgian Federal Government
  • The NATO Archives' Subject Files on the Harmel Report, from Parallel History Project
  • Weber, Bruce 18 November 2009 "Pierre Harmel, Belgian Who Helped Reshape NATO, Dies at 98" The New York Times
Political offices
Preceded by
Théo Lefèvre
Prime Minister of Belgium
Succeeded by
Paul Vanden Boeynants
Preceded by
Paul Struye
President of the Senate
Succeeded by
Robert Vandekerckhove
Belgian nobility
New creation Count Harmel
Succeeded by
Roger Harmel

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Pierre Harmel Information about

Pierre Harmel

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