Right-wing Dutch MP Geert Wilders has hailed his party’s General Election results despite exit polls saying that Holland’s liberal Prime Minister Mark Rutte will cling to power.
Rutte’s VVD party is predicted to get 31 seats in the 150-seat parliament, according to the polls, while Wilders’ PVV party is joint second, alongside two other parties, with 19 seats.
The polls represent a decrease of 10 seats for Rutte and an increase of seven seats for Wilders.
Rutte’s junior partner in the outgoing coalition, Labour, suffered its worst ever result, winning just nine seats, down from 38 last time.
If the results hold, Rutte – who has vowed never to work alongside Wilders – will attempt to form a coalition government.
This could take weeks or even months, with at least three other parties needed to reach a majority in parliament.
The PM said: ‘It seems like for third time in a row the VVD is the Netherlands biggest party.
‘Our message to the Netherlands – that we will hold our course, and keep this country safe and stable – got though.
‘I have had lots of European colleagues on the line. This is an evening where the Netherlands, after Brexit and Trump, said ‘That’s enough of the wrong sort of populism’.’
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