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Green Party approves new Swedish government agreement

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Green Party approves new Swedish government agreement
The Green Party's Isabella Lövin and Gustav Fridolin at Sunday's press conference. Photo: Claudio Bresciani/TT
11:22 CET+01:00
The Green Party on Sunday gave its formal backing to a deal struck on Friday that aims to finally end months of political gridlock in Sweden.
The party voted overwhelming to support an agreement it struck with the Centre Party, the Liberals and the Social Democrats that would allow Stefan Löfven to stay on as prime minister. 
 
Green Party spokeswoman Isabella Lövin said that a significant majority of the party’s board approved the deal, which she said represents a “crossroads” for Sweden. 
 
 
“Either we allow racism to dictate the conditions or we come together to defend a solidaric and democratic world,” she said. 
 
Lövin said the four-party agreement would effectively freeze out right-wing and populist forces, an apparent reference to the Sweden Democrats. It was the refusal of The Centre and the Liberals to back a government made up of their centre-right allies with support from the Sweden Democrats that paved the way for Friday’s agreement. 
 
Green Party spokesman Gustav Fridolin echoed Lövin’s sentiments, saying that the party had worked hard to find a solution in the political centre. 
 
“While country after country has fallen for right-wing populism, Sweden is choosing a different path,” he said at Sunday’s press conference. 
 
It is expected that the new government would consist of the Social Democrats and the Green Party, with the Centre Party and the Liberals offering “passive support” by abstaining from Wednesday’s scheduled vote on installing Löfven as prime minister. 
 
 
Sweden's system of negative parliamentarianism means a proposed government does not technically need a single vote in its favour to pass; all that is required is that a majority does not vote against it.
 
With the Green Party’s formal approval, all eyes will now turn to the Liberals, who are expected to make a decision later on Sunday. 
 
Another open question is how the Left Party will respond to the four-party deal. Even with the votes from the Social Democrats and Green Party, and the Centre and Liberal's abstentions, the suggested government would need Left Party support in order to pass a parliamentary vote.
 
The four-party agreement explicitly states that the Left Party “will not have influence over the political direction in Sweden during the coming term". 
 
The Left Party has not yet publicly stated its position to the proposal.
 
 
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