Eyskens, Gaston (gästôNˈ Īˈskəns) [key], 1905–88, Belgian political leader. He became a professor at the Univ. of Louvain in 1931. A Christian Socialist member of parliament (1939–73), he headed the ministry of finance (1945, 1947–49, 1965–66), served as governor of the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (1947–49), and was minister of economic affairs (1950). He was three times prime minister (1949, 1958–61, 1968–72). In his second term, Belgium ceded independence to Congo (Kinshasa), and in his last term he attempted to resolve the long-standing friction between Belgium's French-speaking and Dutch-speaking communities.
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