Left Party gives Stefan Löfven green light for second term as Sweden’s PM

Swedish Prime minister Stefan Löfven gives a press conference after a meeting with the Speaker of the Swedish Parliament Riksdagen on January 16, 2019 in Stockholm. Lawmakers will vote on January 18, 2019 on nominee for prime minister proposed by parliamentary speaker Andreas Norlen. (Jessica Gow/AFP/Getty Images)
Sweden’s Left Party will abstain on Friday’s prime minister vote, opening the way for a new Social Democrat-Green government to be formed.

The promise to abstain likely brings Sweden’s four-month-long government deadlock to an end.

To become the next prime minister a candidate has to avoid a majority of the Riksdag voting against them.

Social Democrat Stefan Löfven had managed to secure support from the Greens, Center and Liberal parties, but the Left were ready to vote with the right-wing parties to block him.

After last-minute talks Left Party leader Jonas Sjöstedt says his party will no longer stand in the way of the new government.

Related stories from around the North:

Canada: Canada’s Inuit leaders hope progress is not lost in Trudeau’s latest cabinet shuffle, CBC News

Finland: Finnish president makes state visit to China, Yle News

Norway: Rebel region in Arctic Norway slams door on Oslo government, The Independent Barents Observer

Sweden: Sweden’s Left Party threatens to sink Löfven’s PM hopes, Radio Sweden

United States: In Congress, Alaskans are split over shutdown, Alaska Public Media

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