Chris Stone, husband of Belgian Foreign Minister Sophie Wilmes, has been diagnosed with brain cancer. The minister is stepping down to take care of the ailing Chris Stone. It is learned that Wilmes, who is also the Deputy Prime Minister of the country, will be on “full summer vacation”. Wilmes said he had made the decision “in consultation” with the prime minister.
In a statement, Belgian Prime Minister Alexander de Cruz said the decision by Wilmes was “worthy of the highest respect.” He added that Wilmes was not officially resigning. He also said that his responsibilities would be temporarily transferred to another ministry by issuing a ‘Royal Decree’.
The minister, who served as Belgium’s prime minister in 2019 and 2020, married Chris Stone of Australia in 2009. Former footballer Chris has been the Vice President of the Belgian Branch of Australian Business since 2012. The couple has three daughters. Stone also has a son with his ex-wife.
In a statement on Twitter, Wilmes confirmed his resignation, saying “the disease has suddenly come into our lives, especially in the life of Christopher.” Like many other men, women and even children, she is fighting invasive brain cancer. As stagnant as a minister, it is necessary for me to be always present and committed to my responsibilities, that sense of responsibility is difficult for me now. At the moment, this responsibility is not helping husband Christopher and helping our children meet their needs.
For now, Prime Minister De Crew has announced that he will be acting foreign minister. He said that in such a difficult situation, it is necessary to play the role of a wife and a mother first.