Municipal elections must focus on fight against right-wing extremism: D66 leader
For national political party D66, the upcoming municipal elections are dominated by the fight against extremism and polarization, said party leader Sigrid Kaag at the kick-off of her party's municipal election campaign. The local government elections will take place on March 16.
The party will "do everything in its power to keep the extreme right out of city councils,” Kaag said during a meeting in Rotterdam. "We are not going to govern with extremists and I call on all my national colleagues to provide the same clarity."
According to the D66 leader, democracy requires "vigilance and protection.” She pointed to those Members of Parliament who are calling for tribunals to punish politicians who enacted coronavirus policy, the effects of which are MPs who feel less free to express their opinions.
"Extremism carries the wrong flags or a torch on the street. In the Tweede Kamer, it wears a tie. With a small number of seats, it often paralyzes the parliamentary order. And now it is knocking on the doors of council chambers all over the Netherlands," Kaag said.
According to her, the municipal elections are about "connection and solidarity in our society and against persistent polarization" and "against the advance of extremes.”
In her speech, Kaag did not specifically name any parties. However, her party chose not to cooperate in a new coalition with FvD and PVV prior to the parliamentary elections in March last year.
The announcement comes as GroenLinks leader Jesse Klaver likewise said his party would not govern with FvD or PVV after the elections in March and called on other parties to do the same.
"How do you protect democracy against attacks from within? By taking a position and drawing a line,” Klaver said.
Reporting by ANP