Dutch coalition talks continue

EPA-EFE/REMKO DE WAAL

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte of the People's Party for Freedom and Democracy (VVD) at the Dutch parliament after talks with coalition partner the Dutch Labour Party (PvdA) in The Hague, the Netherlands, 30 August 2017.

Dutch coalition talks continue


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The Netherland’s ChristenUnie MP Joel Voordewind told a radio programme that the country’s four parties, which are in talks to form a new coalition government, are still seeking a joint position on Europe.

“Europe still needs to be discussed,” Voordewind told Radio1 programme Kamerbreed, which was discussing Commission chairman Jean-Claude Juncker’s speech on the future of Europe last week.

The ChristenUnie is critical of the EU and does not think it should be expanded, in line with both the Christian Democrats and the VVD.

As reported by Dutch News, Voordewind said Juncker’s speech “sent shivers down my spine”. But D66 MEP Sophie in ‘t Veld told the programme that Europe needs to become more resolute. She criticised prime minister and VVD leader Mark Rutte for not accepting Juncker’s longer-term vision on European integration.

“Mr Rutte wants more of the same,” she said. “But that will not meet the challenges of today.”

The Netherlands has been without a new government since the March 15 general election. Unless a coalition is agreed before October 9, this will be the longest formation process on record.

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