Related News

Home » World

Social Democrats win Iceland's election

ICELAND'S Social DemocratJohanna Sigurdardottir swept to victory in elections at the weekend after street protests over an economic meltdown toppled the previous government.

Though on course for an outright majority in parliament, her new coalition government will have to overcome disagreements about entering the European Union and on cutting spending and raising revenues to get state finances back in order.

With 81 percent of votes counted, state television said the Social Democrat/Left-Green caretaker government, which came in after the old administration fell, would win 34 seats, a majority of three in the 63-seat parliament. The Social Democrats were set to get 20 seats from Saturday's election and the Left Greens 14.

"I am touched, proud and humble at this moment when we are experiencing this great, historic victory of the social democratic movement," Sigurdardottir, 66, said.

Sigurdardottir said it was the first time since the Icelandic Republic was founded in 1944 that left-of-center parties had won a majority.

The long-ruling Independence Party oversaw Iceland's boom years but was blamed for the economic crisis that erupted last year when banks collapsed under a weight of vast debts. Iceland still expects the economy to contract by more than 10 percent this year and inflation was 15.2 percent in March.

The pro-EU Social Democrats will lead the coalition but they have to find a compromise with the anti-EU Left-Greens on entry talks with the EU.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend