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Turkey backs Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte for Nato top job – DutchNews.nl


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Rutte and Erdogan on Friday. Photo: Turkish Presidency Press Office/AFP

Turkey is backing outgoing Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte as new Nato chief, Dutch media reported on Monday, citing both Turkish and Nato sources.

Rutte was in Turkey on Friday to meet prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdog and said after the talks they had been “extremely positive”. Hungary, Slovakia and Romania have not yet made their preferences clear and Rutte will need the support of all 32 Nato members to get the top job.

Romanian president Klaus Iohannis has put himself forward as an alternative to Rutte but has gathered minimal backing and is expected to withdraw.

Most resistance from the remaining three countries is expected from Hungary, where Viktor Orban has told reporters previously that “we are waiting for the next Dutch prime minister. That is the problem.”

Current Nato chief Jens Stoltenberg will leave on October 1 at the latest.

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