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Stefan Lofven: Sweden's parliament removes prime minister



Sweden's centre-left prime minister, Stefan Lofven, will have to stand down after losing the support of parliament.



The anti-immigration Sweden Democrats (SD) backed the vote to remove him, weeks after a general election that delivered a hung parliament.


Mr Lofven was opposed by 204 MPs, with 142 voting in favour.



The parliamentary speaker will now propose a new prime minister, with centre-right leader Ulf Kristersson seen as the most likely candidate.


Mr Lofven is expected to stay on as caretaker prime minister while his replacement is decided, in a process that could take weeks.


What happens next?


Mr Lofven, the leader of the Social Democrats, came to power in 2014.

In this month's election, his centre-left bloc won 144 seats, one more than the centre-right bloc led by Mr Kristersson.



Neither of the blocs intends to govern with the SD, the third-largest party in the new parliament with 62 seats.


A member of Mr Kristersson's Moderate party, Andreas Norlen, was confirmed as the parliament's new speaker on Monday, with the support of SD.


The splintered nature of the house makes securing a stable government tricky because:



  • Mr Lofven's party has ruled out backing a centre-right minority government
  • Two of the four members of the centre-right bloc say they will quit if it negotiates a deal with the SD

If there are four unsuccessful attempts to form a government, that will trigger fresh elections - something which has never happened before.

The main bone of contention is whether the blocs can stomach supporting each other, or if they will seek support from the Sweden Democrats - something several party leaders have promised never to do.
Stefan Lofven: Sweden's parliament removes prime minister Reviewed by Akande Boluwatife on September 26, 2018 Rating: 5

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