Swedish center-right leader gets more time to form coalition

AP , Wednesday 12 Oct 2022

The leader of Sweden's third largest party -- the center-right Moderates -- said Wednesday he has not yet been able to reach a deal in his talks to form a coalition with like-minded parties and was granted a two-day extension to broker an agreement.

The Moderates party leader Ulf Kristersson
The Moderates party leader Ulf Kristersson gives a press conference to announce, he s almost ready with the formation of a new government, on October 12, 2022 in Stockholm. AFP

 

``We are moving towards the formation of a government in the coming days. There are some details we want to clear up,'' Moderates leader Ulf Kristersson said after two weeks of talks with the other center-right parties.

It was not clear which parties would be part of center-right governing coalition and he declined to elaborate on what ``details'' need to be dealt with.

He met Wednesday with Andreas Norlen, the speaker of the 349-seat Swedish parliament, to report on his progress. Later, Norlen said in a statement that he had agreed to give an extension till Friday.

In Sweden's Sept. 11 election, the country's four center-right parties won 176 seats while the center-left coalition that included the ruling Social Democrats got 173 seats. Following that, Norlen asked Kristersson to see if he can form a governing coalition. In the past two weeks, he has held talks with the populist Sweden Democrats, the Liberals and Christian Democrats.

The Liberals party does not want to be in a coalition with the right-wing Sweden Democrats, a party founded in the 1980s by far-right extremists that now is the country's second-largest group in parliament. In recent weeks, the populist party that wants to crack down on crime and strictly limit immigration, has tried to move toward the mainstream.

A vote in parliament on a new Swedish prime minister is likely set for Monday Oct. 17.

Days after the elections, Swedish Social Democratic Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson who heads Sweden's largest party, acknowledged losing the election. She will continue in a caretaker capacity until a new government is formed.

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