Most Dutch voters think Cyprus should leave euro zone

Published March 24, 2013

| Reuters

Most Dutch think Cyprus should leave the euro zone even though the cost of a bail-out for the country would be tiny compared to the rescue for Greece, a poll published on Sunday said.

More than half those surveyed, or 56 percent, thought Cyprus should leave, according to a survey by pollster Maurice de Hond.

The results of the poll were published as Dutch finance minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem prepares to meet other euro zone finance ministers to discuss a bail-out for the indebted Mediterranean island. Dijsselbloem is the chair of the Eurogroup euro zone finance ministers, who are due to meet later on Sunday in Brussels.

The poll also showed that a majority of supporters of Dijsselbloem's social democratic Labour party think Cyprus should be helped to avoid going bankrupt.

The question on Cyprus was part of a broader opinion poll on political parties in the Netherlands, where the governing centre-right Liberal party and the social democratic Labour party won a total of 79 seats between them in elections in September last year.

But the poll showed that since then support has grown for strongly eurosceptic parties like the Socialists and the Freedom Party. This reflects widespread frustration at painful austerity measures being pushed through in the country.

The poll showed that if there were elections now, the Liberals would win 23 seats and Labour 18.

"The people who voted Liberal in 2012 but who have since left the party are very eurosceptic," said De Hond.

(Reporting by Thomas Escritt. Editing by Jane Merriman)

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