Sweden's prime minister loses vote of confidence throwing government into disarray

By On September 25, 2018

Sweden's prime minister loses vote of confidence throwing government into disarray

Sweden's Prime Minister Stefan Lofven has been ousted from the government after losing a vote of confidence in parliament Tuesday.

The vote essentially throws the country's political establishment into tumult and could lead to a center-right coalition taking control of government, propped up by the far-right Sweden Democrats.

Swedish lawmakers held a mandatory vote on Tuesday on whether parliament continued to support Prime Minister Lofven following an election on September 9 which resulted in a hung parliament.

Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lofven.Cuneyt Karadag | Andalou Agency | Getty Images Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lofven.

Among Sweden's 349 members of parliament, 204 lawmakers voted "no" to Lofven remaining in his position, Reuters reported Tuesday morning. No one abstained, 142 voted in favour of Lofven remaining in the job and three members of parliament were absent.

The vote comes two weeks after an inconclusive election whose result rocked the country's political establishment.

Neither of the two main political coalitions in Sweden â€" that of Lofven's center-left grouping or the center-right Allian ce -- gained a majority. Making matters worse for Sweden's more liberal politicians, the election saw the far-right Sweden Democrats party increase its share of the vote, becoming something of a "kingmaker" in the formation of a new coalition government.

Lofven, leader of the Social Democrats and the country's prime minister since October 2014, was leading a caretaker government whilst negotiations took place between the parties to form a new coalition government.

He refused to work with the Sweden Democrats, who in turn backed the center-right Alliance coalition in a confidence motion against the prime minister.

Following the vote of confidence result, Lofven warned that an Alliance-led government would be dependent on the Sweden Democrats for support.

The Alliance were defiant ahead of the confidence vote, however.

"Today, after the election, we're doing what we promised before the election," the Moderates' Ulf Kristersson, leader of the largest party in the centre-right Alliance opposition, told parliament ahead of the vote, Swedish English news outlet, The Local, reported Tuesday.

"To the Alliance it is obvious that Sweden needs a new government," Kristersson added.

The Social Democrats (Lofven's party), Greens and Left voted for Löfven, unsurprisingly, while the Alliance which is made up of four center-right parties - the Moderates, the Centre party, the Liberal People's Party and Christian Democrats -- voted against him, along with t he Sweden Democrats, The Local reported.

Source: Google News Sweden | Netizen 24 Sweden

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