Dutch Liberals win most seats in election

2012-09-13 07:57
Dutch Prime Minister and leader of The People's Party for Freedom and Democracy (VVD), Mark Rutte. (AFP, File)

Dutch Prime Minister and leader of The People's Party for Freedom and Democracy (VVD), Mark Rutte. (AFP, File)

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Amsterdam - Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte early on Thursday claimed victory in Wednesday's general election.

Preliminary results gave Rutte's centre-right Liberals 41 seats in the 150-member lower house, a slender two-seat lead over the centre-left Labour Party on 39 seats, with 90% of votes counted.

"Tomorrow I will take the first steps leading to the formation of a cabinet," Rutte said on Dutch television, but declined to comment on which parties he would approach to be in a coalition.

"I just called Mark Rutte and congratulated him with the fact that the VVD [Liberals] is again the biggest party," Labour leader Diederik Samsom told his supporters, conceding defeat.

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