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July 21, 2013

Belgian King Abdicates in Favor of Son

by VOA News

Belgium's King Albert II has abdicated his throne after a 20-year reign, in favor of his son Philippe.

In a solemn ceremony at the royal palace on Sunday, the 79-year-old monarch signed the act of abdication in the presence of Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo, who holds the political power in the parliamentary democracy.

Earlier in the day, both Albert and Philippe attended a Catholic ceremony that set off the day of festivities, ahead of the swearing in of Philippe.

Earlier this month, the king announced he would step down because of age and illness.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and AFP.