Kok, Wim

Kok, Wim (Willem Kok), 1936–2018, Dutch political leader. He worked for the National Association of Trade Unions (later the Federation of Dutch Trade Unions), and served as its chairman from 1973 to 1985. A member of the Labor party, he was first elected to the Dutch parliament in 1986, and became party leader later that year. Following the 1989 elections, Labor joined Ruud Lubbers' Christian Democratic Appeal in a coalition government; Kok became deputy prime minister and finance minister. After the 1994 and 1998 elections, Kok formed a three-party left-right coalition government, and became prime minister. He was noted for his consensus government, which fostered cooperation among the government, employers, and unions in order to reform and revive the economy and reduce the government deficit. The 1995 Srebrenica massacre in Bosnia, which Dutch peacekeepers failed to prevent, ultimately led Kok to resign (2002) after an investigation criticized his administration for placing Dutch troops in an untenable situation.

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