17:32 GMT +318 November 2018
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    Belgian police officers patrol in the central station, in Antwerp, Belgium

    Over 1,500 Belgian Policemen Call in Sick in Protest at Extra Working Hours

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    BRUSSELS (Sputnik) - The Belgian police union SNPS confirmed to Sputnik on Friday the information that about 1,500 police officers had not reported for duty in the Belgian region of Wallonia, citing the need to take a sick leave.

    "We confirm this information," the union said, asked whether the police officers massively called in sick.

    Earlier in the day, local media reported that the police officers took a sick leave to express their protest against extra hours caused by staff shortages.

    READ MORE: Belgian Police Report Having Prevented 3+ Terrorist Attacks Since Early 2017

    The Belgian Interior Ministry did not rule out the possibility of collusion between the police officers and medical workers who signed the sick leave notes. Issuing false medical notes is punished in Belgium by fines and prison sentences up to several years.

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