A broad majority in parliament has rejected a third request from Freedom Party leader Geert Wilders to postpone Wednesday’s debate on the European Stability Mechanism (ESM), a permanent bail-out fund which is part of a EU fiscal pact to reinforce economic supervision.
Mr Wilders’ request won the support of just 33 out of the 150 MPs, with 98 voting against. Similar proposals had already been rejected last week and on Tuesday evening.
The Freedom Party leader is fiercely opposed to any Dutch involvement in the ESM, and wants to postpone any debate on the issue until after a court ruling has been handed down regarding his request for an injunction barring the Dutch state from taking part in the bail-out fund.
Mr Wilders wants the court to block what he has described as “an unlawful action”. Wilders claims that by agreeing to the new pact, the Netherlands will be handing over more power to Brussels.
He says it is not right that a caretaker government should make such important decisions without taking voters’ wishes into account. The Freedom Party leader wants a new parliament to debate the issue after the upcoming general election scheduled for 12 September.
Parliament has resumed its debate with Finance Minister Jan Kees de Jager.
© Radio Netherlands Worldwide