Dutch far-right Party for Freedom (PVV) leader Geert Wilders (L) casts his vote for the consultative referendum on the association between Ukraine and the European Union, in the Hague, the Netherlands, in this April 6, 2016 file photo. REUTERS/Michael Kooren/Files(reuters_tickers)
AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - Dutch anti-immigration leader Geert Wilders called on Friday for a referendum on the Netherlands' membership in the European Union after Britain voted to leave the 28-member bloc.
Wilders, who is leading opinion polls, said if he is elected prime minister in March general elections in the Netherlands he too will call a referendum.
“We want be in charge of our own country, our own money, our own borders, and our own immigration policy," he said in a statement.
"As quickly as possible the Dutch need to get the opportunity to have their say about Dutch membership of the European Union."
A survey by a television channel Een Vandaag this week found that 54 percent of the people in the Netherlands, a founding EU member, want a referendum.
Dutch voters have twice voiced strong anti-EU sentiment at the polls, most recently in April when a vast majority rejected the Ukraine-EU treaty in a nonbinding referendum.
"It is time for a new start, relying on our own strength and sovereignty. Also in the Netherlands," Wilders said.
"If I become prime minister, there will be a referendum in the Netherlands on leaving the European Union as well. Let the Dutch people decide.”
(Reporting By Anthony Deutsch; Editing by Kim Coghill)