Iceland's president asks leftist opposition leader to form new government

Reuters News
Posted: Nov 02, 2017 12:46 PM

REYKJAVIK (Reuters) - Iceland's president asked the leader of the Left-Green Movement on Thursday to form a new government, although it came second in last Saturday's parliamentary election behind Prime Minister Bjarni Beneditksson's ruling Independence Party.

The Independence Party, which has dominated Icelanic politics for decades, fell short of a parliamentary majority, while Katrin Jakobsdottir's Left-Green Movement can muster a narrow majority with the support of three other parties. She has said she may try to form a broad-based government.

The Left-Greens want to reduce inequality and fund an increase in public health care, education and infrastructure spending by raising taxes for the wealthy and introducing a property tax.

(Reporting by Elias Thorsson; writing by Jacob Gronholt-Pedersen; editing by Gareth Jones)