Germany will work with Dutch cabinet despite Wilders support

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German Chancellor Angela Merkel has said she intends to work closely with the rightwing Dutch government despite its dependence on support from the anti-Islam Freedom Party of Geert Wilders.

Speaking during a visit to Berlin by the new Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, she explained that the German government would take a professional approach. "That includes an amicable and close cooperation with the current minority government in the Netherlands," she said.

Regret Last month when the new Dutch government assumed power, Chancellor Merkel said that the regretted that the neighbouring country's government needed to be propped up by Mr Wilders' party, a statement which she did not repeat during the Dutch prime minister's visit.

Mr Rutte said on Friday that he had frank and friendly talks with the Chancellor, pointing out that Germany is the Netherlands main trade partner. This relation provided a solid foundation for expanding German-Dutch cooperation, he said.

Islam Mr Wilders recently claimed in the Dutch Lower House that the majority of Germans did not share the view of Germany's President Christian Wulff that Islam had become a part of Germany, a statement subscribed to by Ms Merkel. The populist MP was speaking just after President Wulff's first visit to Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands . The German head of state said on that occasion that he was confident that values such as human dignity and human rights were not under threat in the Netherlands, adding that he was certain Holland was still tolerant and open-minded.


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