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The police zones

The Belgian police was restructured into two levels in January 2001: the federal police and the local police. Belgium is subdivided into 196 local police areas, also known as "interpolice areas" or "multi-municipal police areas". The Brussels-Capital Region has six local police areas. Each zone comprises several municipalities and has its own police regulations.

The tasks of the local police

The local police are responsible for all matters of local interest within their area: 

  • preventive policing ; 
  • road traffic ; 
  • recording offences committed ; 
  • interviewing suspects and witnesses 
  • drawing up reports. 

Each police force is under the direction of a zone commander (also known as a ‘corps chef’). He is responsible for implementing police management and, more specifically, the zonal security plan. He is responsible for directing, organising and allocating tasks within the local police force. He is responsible for the execution and management of this force, local missions, directives concerning federal missions and requisitions. 

The zone chief is also responsible for preparing matters to be submitted to the police board or the police college and attends the meetings of the college and the board. All correspondence from the police board and the police college, signed by the chairman, is also signed by the zone chief. 

 With regard to the proper management of the police force, the zone chief informs the police college without delay of all matters concerning the local police force and the performance of its duties. He also informs it of the initiatives that the local police intend to take as part of the zonal security plan. Each month, he reports to the police college on the operation of the police force and the actions of its staff. 

The zone chief exercises these powers under the responsibility of the police college. 

The Police College

The day-to-day management of the police zone is the responsibility of the police board, which is made up of the mayors of the municipalities in the zone. The board is chaired by one of the mayors appointed by his peers. 

 The police college exercises the powers of the mayor’s and aldermen's colleges with regard to the organisation and management of the local police. 

 The chief constable of the local police and the secretary of the police zone attend meetings of the police college in their own right. 

The Police Council

Made up proportionally of local councillors from the various municipalities making up the area, the police council exercises powers comparable to those of a local council, but only in respect of policing matters at zonal level (for example: adopting the budget and annual accounts, public works, supply and service contracts, setting the staffing framework, recruiting and dismissing staff, etc.). 

 As a consultative body between the administrative and judicial authorities and the local and federal police services, the zonal police board is responsible for drawing up the zonal security plan, which sets out the priorities for police organisation and action at a zonal level. 

 The police council has the following responsibilities: 

  • adopting the budget, any budget amendments and the annual accounts for the previous financial year ; 
  • choosing the procedure for awarding and setting the terms and conditions of public contracts and concession agreements (subject to legal exceptions); 
  • set the staffing levels, recruit and dismiss members of staff; 
  • authorising legal action; 
  • adopt agreements involving rights in rem in immovable property; 
  • appointing the secretary to the police board and the special accountant for the area; 
  • proposing the appointment of the chief constable and other local police officers. 

 The police council meets at least four times a year. 


The zonal security council

xisting in each police zone, this is the forum for consultation between the administrative (mayors) and judicial (public prosecutors) authorities, the local police services (zone chief) and the federal police. 

 One of the council's tasks is to draw up the zonal security plan, which defines the priorities for police organisation and action in the zone. 

More information on police areas

Find the list of police zones under Assistance, Social, Health.