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Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Netherlands. Candidate for Prime Minister Geert Wilders without support. Media: party leaders may not join the government

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The leader of the populist Freedom Party (PVV), Geert Wilders, announced on Wednesday that he would not become prime minister of the Netherlands because he was not supported by all parties that were to form the ruling coalition. Although parliamentary elections were held four months ago, a government has still not been formed. The media reported that the parties were considering a scenario in which their leaders would not join the government, and the cabinet would be formed by experts and politicians not closely associated with any of these groups.

“I could only become prime minister if all parties in the coalition supported me. This did not happen,” wrote Geert Wilders on X. “I really want a right-wing cabinet to be formed. Less asylum and immigration. Love for the country and voters is great and more important than my position,” added the leader of the populist Freedom Party (PVV).

Impasse in building a government and a special negotiator

Although elections parliamentary elections took place four months ago, a government has still not been formed. The deadlock in coalition building became obvious in mid-January due to divisions among liberals in the People's Party for Freedom and Democracy (VVD) over the refugee bill.

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The leaders of the PVV, VVD, the Farmer-Citizen Movement (BBB) ​​and Pieter Omtzigt's New Social Contract group are participating in the talks on the new coalition. The Dutch public broadcaster NOS reported on Wednesday that these parties are currently considering a scenario in which their leaders will not join the government but will remain in parliament, and the cabinet will be formed by experts and politicians not closely related to any of these groups.

The negotiator appointed to implement the plan will present its findings to parliament on Thursday, Reuters reported.

Geert WildersSEM VAN DER WAL/PAP

Attempts to form a government became complicated in January when VVD senators – against the will of the party's leader, Dilan Yesilgoz – announced their support for a draft law that requires municipalities to accept asylum seekers. In October 2023, the bill gained support in the lower house of parliament, but liberal MPs there voted against its adoption.

The decision of the VVD senators was protested by Wilders, who considers issues related to refugees and migrants to be a priority. The Freedom Party opposed the adoption of a law that would force local governments to accept asylum seekers.

Main photo source: SEM VAN DER WAL/PAP



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