Belgium is about to let Prince Albert out of the can... [View all]
Belgium's King Albert II announces he will abdicate throne
Belgium's King Albert II announced Wednesday that he will abdicate the throne and will be succeeded by his son, Crown Prince Philippe, on July 21.
Albert, 79, gave a televised address to the nation on Wednesday after a frenzy of speculation that he would be stepping down in favor of his son, Philippe, 53. His abdication coincides with the nation's independence day celebration on July 21 for the kingdom of 10.5 million people. He is the first of the six monarchs in Belgium history to abdicate the throne.