Saturday

29th Apr 2017

Netherlands' Geert Wilders cuts up EU flag

Scissors in hand, anti-EU nationalist Geert Wilders of the Netherlands on Tuesday (20 May) vandalised the European Union flag in front of the European Parliament in Brussels.

In a publicity stunt amid the dozen or so cafes at Place Luxembourg, overlooked by the parliament’s tall glass structures, Wilders cut out a yellow star before unfolding the Dutch flag in its place.

Dear EUobserver reader

Subscribe now for unrestricted access to EUobserver.

Sign up for 30 days' free trial, no obligation. Full subscription only 15 € / month or 150 € / year.

  1. Unlimited access on desktop and mobile
  2. All premium articles, analysis, commentary and investigations
  3. EUobserver archives

EUobserver is the only independent news media covering EU affairs in Brussels and all 28 member states.

♡ We value your support.

If you already have an account click here to login.

  • Geert Wilders cuts a star out of the EU flag (Photo: EUobserver)

The nationalist, who runs the Dutch Freedom Party, is convinced he will be able to form a new group of eurosceptic MEPs following the upcoming European Parliament elections. He wants the Netherlands to leave the Union, regain its sovereignty, and shut down its borders to asylum seekers.

His other goal - to pull apart the EU from within by forming the anti-EU faction in parliament - will require at least 25 MEPs from seven EU member states.

Wilders says he will be meeting with other eurosceptic politicians next week in Brussels to work out a deal.

“It is our task to try to work together to overstep our differences, to not get into fights about our leadership, to overstep ‘our shadows’ as we say in the Netherlands,” he said.

He was short on details.

He would not say which parties he will meet, but noted he intends to get Ukip leader Nigel Farage to sign up along with Marine Le Pen from France's National Front.

Wilders has yet to meet or discuss the proposal with Farage, but said like-minded parties from the United Kingdom, France, Austria, Belgium and the Netherlands have more in common than they do differences.

Farage, for his part, has vowed never to join forces with Le Pen, branding the French national's party anti-semitic.

“I know he is very sceptical about working together, maybe not so much towards my party but more to the party of Mrs Le Pen,” said Wilders.

He added: “I don’t know if it will work, I think I should try, we should try and of course at the end of day, it is up to Farage himself to decide whether he would want to or not.”

Asked if he would be able to form a group without Farage’s support, Wilders said Yes.

“I think it will be possible but hey it’s better to have even more than seven [member states] so let’s not aim at the minimum but go for the maximum,” he noted.

Recent poll results for Farage’s Ukip give contrasting results ahead of the 22 May elections.

One poll by ComRes says Ukip is ahead with 35 percent, while another by ICM says it slipped to third place behind the Conservatives.

A TNS-Nipo poll from 14 May puts Wilder's PVV third place at 11.9 percent.

Focus

Greece's Golden Dawn seeks allies in EP

Golden Dawn, set to debut in the EP after Sunday's vote, has few allies among well-established far-right parties, but plenty of links with radical fringe groups across Europe.

Opinion

Rethinking Europe's relationship with Turkey

As Turkey's democracy is in an increasingly troubled state, a new association agreement with the country should replace the current EU accession talks.

Mob storms Macedonian parliament

A nationalist mob violently stormed parliament in Macedonia on Thursday, amid EU concern on police conduct during the attack.

News in Brief

  1. Vote of no confidence prepared against Spanish PM
  2. Syria to buy Russian anti-missile system
  3. Germany seeks partial burka ban
  4. Libya has no plan to stop migration flows
  5. EU has no evidence of NGO-smuggler collusion in Libya
  6. Poland gets 'final warning' on logging in ancient forest
  7. Commission gives Italy final warning on air pollution
  8. Romania and Slovenia taken to court over environment policies

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. European Healthy Lifestyle AllianceCharlotte Hornets' Nicolas Batum Tells Kids to "Eat Well, Drink Well, Move!"
  2. ECR GroupSyed Kamall: We Need a New, More Honest Relationship With Turkey
  3. Counter BalanceParliament Sends Strong Signal to the EIB: Time to Act on Climate Change
  4. ACCARisks and Opportunities of Blockchain and Shared Ledgers Technologies in Financial Services
  5. UNICEFRace Against Time to Save Millions of Lives in Yemen
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersDeveloping Independent Russian-Language Media in the Baltic Countries
  7. Swedish EnterprisesReform of the European Electricity Market: Lessons from the Nordics, Brussels 2 May
  8. Malta EU 2017Green Light Given for New EU Regulation to Bolster External Border Checks
  9. Counter BalanceCall for EU Commission to Withdraw Support of Trans-Adriatic Pipeline
  10. ACCAEconomic Confidence at Highest Since 2015
  11. European Federation of Allergy and Airways60%-90% of Your Life Is Spent Indoors. How Does Poor Indoor Air Quality Affect You?
  12. European Gaming and Betting AssociationCJEU Confirms Obligation for a Transparent Licensing Process

Latest News

  1. EP chief faces questions after homophobic 'summit'
  2. EU signals Northern Ireland could join if united with Ireland
  3. One year later: EU right to open Internet still virtual
  4. Rethinking Europe's relationship with Turkey
  5. Mob storms Macedonian parliament
  6. MEPs retain secrecy on office spending
  7. May accuses EU-27 of 'lining up against Britain'
  8. Resurrected Renzi to regain leadership of Italy's ruling party