The history of the German-speaking part of Belgium has certainly been a very eventful one

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In the Great War the inhabitants of Eupen-Malmedy fought on the side of the German Reich. The Treaty of Versailles (1919-1920) awarded the districts Eupen-Malmédy and Neutral-Moresnet to Belgium.

Twenty years later, Eupen-Malmédy and a small number of border areas on the Belgian side were annexed to the Reich by a decree of the Fùhrer. After the liberation by the Allies the area was returned to Belgium. Belgium and the Federai Republic finally ironed out their outstan-ding border disputes in the September Accords of 1956.

Since 1984 nine municipalities in the cantons of Eupen and Sankt-Vith have made up the Ger­man-speaking Community, home to 74,000 people that are first and foremost proud to cali them-selves Belgians. A historical weakness has now been turned into an economie strength. A state or language frontier is never far away in the region, which opens the way to cross-cultural and cross-border contacts, such as the Meuse-Rhine euroregion and SaarLorLux. The extensive forest plains and pastures offer a vast array of leisure options. The valleys of the Geul, Vesdre, Hoègne and other rivers are perfect for hiking. The most attractive area is without doubt the High Fens, one of the last of its kind in Europe.

Explorers are sure to enjoy the monuments of bygone ages, including medieval forts and castles, chapels and churches, old farmsteads and country mansions. The region is also teaming with langlauf and downhill skiing centres, guaranteeing many hours of winter pleasure.

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