Brussels - Belgium's fallen prime minister, Yves Leterme, returned to government on Friday seven months after leaving it, as he took control of the foreign ministry in a reshuffle of European dimensions.
Leterme's move to the foreign ministry followed the appointment of veteran foreign minister Karel de Gucht to the post of European Union commissioner for development issues.
The conservative Dutch-speaking Leterme, 48, topped a national election in June 2007, but found his attempts to form a stable government blocked by tensions between Dutch- and French-speaking parties in parliament.
Taking up the post of prime minister in March 2008, he offered to resign just four months later in protest at the two communities' inability to reach a deal. Belgium's king rejected that offer.
But Leterme was forced out of office in December after it was alleged that he had used his position to put pressure on judges in the disputed sale of collapsed banking group Fortis.
His return to cabinet caps a political rehabilitation which began in June when he scored a resounding success in regional elections. (dpa)