Skip to content
Edit post

Dutch far-right leader Wilders criticizes Ukrainian refugees

by Nate Ostiller and The Kyiv Independent news desk February 19, 2024 5:01 PM 2 min read
Dutch far-right leader Geert Wilders is seen casting his vote in the Dutch General Elections on Nov. 22, 2023, in The Hague, Netherlands. (Patrick van Katwijk/BSR Agency/Getty Images)
This audio is created with AI assistance

Support independent journalism in Ukraine. Join us in this fight.

Become a member Support us just once

Dutch far-right leader Geert Wilders railed against Ukrainian refugees on Feb. 19, saying that they are coming to the Netherlands for "free housing, free healthcare, and our jobs."

Wilders, whose Party for Freedom (PVV) party won 37 of 150 seats in parliamentary elections in November 2023, has long been vocally anti-immigration but has also made a number of statements in favor of Russia and against the Netherlands continuing to provide support to Ukraine.

Wilders has so far been unable to find coalition partners and form a government. In the interim, Dutch foreign policy remains in the hands of the current government under Prime Minister Mark Rutte.

In a post on X, formerly known as Twitter, Wilders said that Ukrainians are coming to the Netherlands not to flee from the full-scale war but instead to receive benefits from the Dutch government.

"The Netherlands is once again the village idiot of Europe," Wilders said.

Wilders was responding to an article by the Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf published on Feb. 19, in which an official in charge of refugees in the city of Utrecht said that facilities were reaching capacity.

This was in part due to an increasing influx of men coming from other EU countries in search of job opportunities, the official said.

Estimates of the number of Ukrainian refugees in the Netherlands vary, but De Telegraaf wrote that 99% of spaces of the 90,000 refugee registration centers are currently occupied.

The EU agreed in October 2023 to extend temporary protections for Ukrainian refugees in member states until March 2025.

From F-16s to frozen assets: How Dutch far-right’s win could impact Ukraine
Nearly two decades after launching his far-right political party, mixing xenophobia with Euroskepticism, Geert Wilders emerged as the winner of the Dutch parliamentary elections on Nov. 22. “The winds of change are here,” said Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, after potentially receiving one m…
Support independent journalism in Ukraine. Join us in this fight.
Freedom can be costly. Both Ukraine and its journalists are paying a high price for their independence. Support independent journalism in its darkest hour. Support us for as little as $1, and it only takes a minute.
visa masterCard americanExpress

News Feed

Ukraine Daily
News from Ukraine in your inbox
Ukraine news
Please, enter correct email address
9:56 AM

Russia launched counterspace weapon into orbit, US says.

Wood described the move as "troubling." Pentagon spokesperson Brigadier General Pat Ryder separately said on May 21 the U.S. was monitoring the situation and had a "responsibility to be ready to protect and defend… the space domain."
MORE NEWS

Editors' Picks

Enter your email to subscribe
Please, enter correct email address
Subscribe
* indicates required
* indicates required
Subscribe
* indicates required
* indicates required
Subscribe
* indicates required

Subscribe

* indicates required
Subscribe
* indicates required

Subscribe

* indicates required
Subscribe
* indicates required

Subscribe

* indicates required
Successfuly subscribed
Thank you for signing up for this newsletter. We’ve sent you a confirmation email.