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article imageIceland president tasks Left-Green leader with forming government

By AFP     Nov 2, 2017 in Politics

Iceland's president on Thursday tasked Left-Green Movement leader Katrin Jakobsdottir with forming a government after her party's strong showing in a snap general election last week.

The former journalist led her party to second place with 11 seats in Saturday's vote, which was won by incumbent prime minister Bjarni Benediktsson's Independence Party.

"I have a formal mandate to try to form a government," Jakobsdottir told reporters after talks with President Gudni Johannesson.

Under the Icelandic system, the president, who holds a largely ceremonial role, usually tasks the leader of the biggest party with putting a government together.

But the Independence Party and Benediktsson have been embroiled in a series of political scandals that have damaged their image and the party lost five seats on Saturday.

Jakobsdottir has promised to make sure Iceland's economic prosperity, triggered by booming tourism, leads to a boost in public spending on health and education.

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