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Belgium music festival cancelled after after warnings that the event would feature neo-Nazi acts

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The Ypres city council on Tuesday revoked the permit of the Frontnacht music festival, which was due to be held the weekend of Aug. 27-28.

An “identitarian” music festival for radical Flemish nationalists was cancelled by local authorities in the Belgian city of Ypres after warnings that the event would feature neo-Nazi acts and attract right-wing extremists. 

The Frontnacht music festival was due to be held the weekend of August 27-28, with attendees camping in a field in Steenstraete, near Ypres, to listen to a lineup of far-right musical acts. The festival was being held for the first time in a bid to rejuvenate and increase the youth appeal of the IJzerwake, an annual gathering of radical Flemish nationalists organised by a group of the same name.

Earlier this week, the Ypres city council revoked the permit of the music festival after European intelligence services and Belgium’s Coordination Unit for Threat Analysis expressed concerns about the affiliations of the acts set to perform.

Scheduled to headline the festival was the Italian band Bronson, whose members belong to Italy’s neo-fascist CasaPound movement and regularly praise the late fascist dictator Benito Mussolini, Vice reported. The publication also noted that other acts in the lineup had ties to the neo-Nazi group Blood & Honour and the international white supremacist gang the Hammerskins.

Ypres city council initially granted the organisers a licence to hold the event, but were forced to rethink their stance after critics pointed out the clear right-wing extremist affiliations of the acts on the bill. A petition was launched calling on the authorities to ban the festival, while European security services also expressed their concern.


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