The result of the last week’s UK referendum has come as a boost to popular movements across Europe. Arguably the Europe’s most articulate proponent of the anti-EU movement, Netherland’s Geert Wilders has called for a Dutch referendum on EU membership following the British vote. Wilders, leader and founder of Dutch Party for Freedom (PVV), said in written statement that “the United Kingdom is leading the way to the future and liberation. The time is now for a new start, trusting in its own strength and sovereignty. Also in the Netherlands.”
Wilders believes that Brexit is merely the beginning of the end for the EU. “The Netherlands will be next,” he told the media after the result of the UK referendum was announced. “We want to regain control over our country, our own money, our own borders, our own immigration policy.”
Just two days before the British referendum, a poll conducted by a Dutch television channel showed that 54 percent of Dutch voters were in favour of holding a referendum over the country’s membership in the EU. Around 48 percent of those asked would vote to leave the EU, with 45 percent wishing to remain.
Wilders tabled a resolution in the Dutch parliament asking for an in-out referendum on the EU — where PVV serves as the third largest party. On Tuesday, the parliament rejected his motion. Later in the day, Wilders issued a statement on social media saying, “My proposal for a NExit referendum was rejected today. Dutch get a 2nd chance on March 15, 2017, the day of our next general elections.”
British newspaper The Express reports:
The motion for a ‘Nexit’ vote was quickly shut down after opposition leader Geert Wilders, of the Party for Freedom (PVV), put it forward.
Mr Wilders, said: “I say this to everyone: the Dutch deserve a referendum as well.
“The Dutch should also be able to rule in favour or against the departure of the Netherlands from the European Union and the restoration of our national sovereignty and independence.” (…)
[Wilders] added: “My proposal for a Nexit referendum was rejected. “But the Dutch get a second chance on March 15, 2017, the day of our next general elections.”
After Geert Wilders produced a documentary film in 2008 titled ‘Fitna’ dealing with the issues of terrorism and radical Islam, an Islamic religious edict or ‘Fatwa was issued in Wilders’ name calling for his beheading. Due to subsequent death threats, he and his wife have been living under 24 hours police protection, at times spending nights in Dutch detention cells. Leading opponent of radical Islam in Europe, Al Qaeda placed Gilders on its hit list seven years ago.