Center-right leader urged to form new government in Sweden
COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — The leader of Sweden’s third-largest party — the center-right Moderates — was formally invited on Monday to try to form a government that could include Sweden’s populist Democrats, either in a coalition government , or outside to obtain a majority.
In Sweden’s September 11 elections, the country’s four centre-right parties won 176 seats while the centre-left coalition that included the ruling Social Democrats won 173 seats. Following this, Andreas Norlen, the speaker of Sweden’s 349-seat parliament, the Riksdagen, asked Ulf Kristersson, the leader of the moderates, to see if he could form a coalition government.
Norlen, who has held talks with all party leaders to find out who might try to form a government coalition, said he had not set a date by which Kristersson should come back with an answer because it could take time. .
“My message to the speaker is that everything is fine,” Kristersson told reporters after meeting Norlen. “I want to form a government that unites, not divides.”
The leader of the Swedish Democrats, Jimmie Akesson, said after meeting Norlen on Monday that “it would suit Sweden to have a majority government. It’s my point of view.
The question now is which coalition can achieve a majority. One of the centre-right parties has said it does not want to be part of a coalition with the right-wing Swedish Democrats, a party founded in the 1980s by far-right extremists that is now the second tallest in the country in parliament.
Different centre-right constellations are possible, but it seems clear that the Swedish Democrats will have significant weight in any centre-right government.
The populist party has attempted to move into the mainstream in recent years, standing this year on a platform of cracking down on crime and tightly limiting immigration.
Sweden has seen an increase in gang violence in recent years and this year there have been 273 shootings, 47 of them fatal, according to police statistics. The shooting also injured 74 people, including innocent bystanders.
Last week, Swedish Social Democratic Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson admitted losing the election. She will continue her interim duties until a new government is formed.