Word has reached Washington through official channels that the Belgian Courts liave admitted the claim of the loyal Belgian newspapers to use the machinery and equipment of La Bruxellois and La Belgique, two proGerman newspapers which were published in Brussels. under German control during the occupation, and which were the only ones allowed to retain a complete equipment and stocks of paper. After evacuation, the properties of the more self-respecting newspapers, which had ceased publication during the occupation, brought suit for permission to use the machines belonging to the two pro-German papers, .and devote the reels of paper to the "needs of a free and patriotic press." Their claim has been admitted by the Belgian Court. The material seized at the office of La Belgique has been handed over to the directors 6i Le Soir and of Le Derniere Heure, these acting in behalf of a dozen Brussels newspapers. The presiding judge, Maurice Benoit, is a well-known Brussels character, and was a fearless opponent of the German administration during the Avar. His opinion of La Belgique and La Bruxellois was given in a judgment he rendered in 1915. A citizen won a suit for libel against La Belgique and demanded the publication of the decision in La Belgique and three other Belgian newspapers. Judge Bonoit, however, in passing judgment, said: "It does not appear possible to completely satisfy the claim of ,the applicant at present—there are, in fact,- no Belgian newspapers now appearing in Belgium. Those issued since the occupation under German censorship cannot be so described. 'Che plaintiff must await the evacuation of our country in order to exercise his rights in this respect. The reparation due him will be all the more complete."
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BELGIAN PRESS., Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXXIX, Issue 9597, 29 April 1919
BELGIAN PRESS. Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXXIX, Issue 9597, 29 April 1919
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