Coalition talks start, VVD again says no to cabinet membership
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Dilan Yesilgoz arrives for talks with Ronald Plasterk. Photo: Koen van Weel ANP

The VVD wants to help put together a centre-right cabinet made up of the far-right PVV and new parties NSC and BBB, but as a silent partner, not a full member, leader Dilan Yesilgöz said on Wednesday.

Speaking after exchanging views with Ronald Plasterk, who has been charged with sounding out parties about the cabinet options, Yesilgöz said: “We are ready to start debating the contents”.

However, she said, “We would like to do this from parliament,” when asked if thr VVD really did not want to be part of the cabinet. That is in line with all the statements she has made since last week’s general election.

PVV leader Geert Wilders said after his talks with Plasterk that he wanted to talk about a four-party coalition that included the VVD. However, he said, a minority government is not taboo. The four parties would have 88 seats between them in the 150-seat lower house of parliament.

Meanwhile, GroenLinks/PvdA leader Frans Timmermans told reporters he did not believe Wilders had softened his stance, despite his claims during the campaign.  “Someone who has put something on ice is planning to keep it fresh and use it later,” he said.

Wilders told Nieuwsuur during the campaign he was prepared to put the policies that have defined his party for 25 years into cold storage, such as a ban on the Qur’an, a referendum on Nexit and closing Islamic schools.

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