Right wing coalition talks continue, all eyes on Pieter Omtzigt
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Geert Wilders and Dilan Yesilgöz after their talks with Plasterk. Photo: Remko de Waal ANP

The far right PVV, pro-farmer BBB and the right wing Liberals are ready to hold talks on forming a new government, although the VVD will not join a cabinet, the three party leaders said on Tuesday.

“We are ready to start negotiating on the contents and that is, I think, what the Netherlands is waiting for,” VVD leader Dilan Yesilgöz told reporters after her joint meeting with Geert Wilders and verkenner Ronald Plasterk.

Wilders told reporters that the talks are “focused on building trust” but walked off when asked by one about his behaviour on social media. Earlier, Wilders accused Pieter Omtzigt, the fourth potential partner, of playing “political games”.

NSC leader Omtzigt has so far been reluctant to embrace a coalition involving Wilders because some of the party’s standpoints conflict with the constitution.

Omtzigt said last week he wanted guarantees from Wilders that his party would respect the constitution and the Netherlands’ obligations under international treaties before coalition talks could begin.

But on Monday he was photographed leaving a meeting with Plasterk carrying a notepad with the words “not in PVV/NSC/BBB” visible, suggesting he had ruled out a combination of the three parties in advance.

Asked what he intended to discuss with Wilders, Omtzigt said: “We’ll see. But sometimes it’s good to talk with another person present.”

Plasterk will hold crunch talks with Omtzigt and Wilders, then Omtzigt and Yesilgöz on Wednesday. He said Tuesday talks were “useful” and had brought clarity. Once this round of talks have been completed, Plasterk will work on his report, which he aims to present to parliament next week.

The PVV and BBB control 44 of the 150 seats in parliament and need at least two more parties to form a majority coalition.

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