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Swedish PM Stefan Lofven loses no-confidence motion, could resign

By
Zarrin Ahmed
If Lofven resigns, the move would require an interim caretaker government for Sweden until the next parliamentary elections in September 2022. File Photo by Anders Wiklund/EPA-EFE
If Lofven resigns, the move would require an interim caretaker government for Sweden until the next parliamentary elections in September 2022. File Photo by Anders Wiklund/EPA-EFE

June 21 (UPI) -- Due largely to a growing housing crisis, Sweden's Parliament on Monday passed a no-confidence motion against Prime Minister Stefan Lofven -- a move that could remove him from power and usher in a caretaker government.

Of the 349 members of the Riksdag, 181 voted against Lofven in the motion, which required a majority of 175 votes to pass. There were 51 abstentions.

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Lofven lost the no-confidence vote due mainly to a worsening housing crisis and surging real estate prices in Sweden.

First elected in 2014, Lofven will now have a week to resign as prime minister and allow the Riksdag speaker to begin cross-party negotiations to form a new government -- or call for a snap election, which would have to occur within three months.

If he resigns, the move would require an interim caretaker government for Sweden until the next parliamentary elections in September 2022.

Lofven is Sweden's first prime minister to lose a no-confidence motion brought by the opposition.

The minority Left Party said it's lost confidence in Lofven due to recent proposals to eliminate rent controls at newly built residential properties.

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The Left Party was supported by the Moderates, Christian Democrats and Swedish Democrats in the vote. The Swedish Democrats pushed the motion forward.

Lofven also lost a no-confidence vote in 2018, but remained as head of the caretaker government. Efforts to find a replacement failed and Lofven was again elected four months later.

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