Danish PM: After weeks of talks, deal on centrist govt

Dec 12, 2022, 10:30 PM | Updated: Dec 13, 2022, 1:24 pm
File - Mette Frederiksen chair of The Social Democrats and acting Prime Minister takes to the press...

File - Mette Frederiksen chair of The Social Democrats and acting Prime Minister takes to the press during government negotiations at Marienborg in Copenhagen, Sunday Dec. 11, 2022. (Liselotte Sabroe/Ritzau Scanpix via AP, File)

(Liselotte Sabroe/Ritzau Scanpix via AP, File)

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — Acting Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen said Tuesday an agreement has been struck to form a new center-led minority government after 42 days of talks following the Nov. 1 general election.

Frederiksen said the governing coalition would include her own Social Democrats, the Liberal Party and the newly created Moderate party of former Danish Prime Lars Løkke Rasmussen. It will be presented later this week. Between them the three parties control 89 seats in parliament.

Details of who will get the different Cabinet posts will be revealed Thursday. The agreement between the parties in the government will be made public Wednesday.

“Because different parties go together in a government does not mean that we agree on everything, but we now choose to enter into a working community with each other because that is the most important thing for our country,” Frederiksen after she formally informed Queen Margrethe, the country’s figurehead monarch, on the agreement.

“Denmark is better off with cooperation and compromises than ultimate demands,” Løkke Rasmussen wrote on Facebook.

A traditional Social Democrats ally, Socialist People’s Party leader Pia Olsen Dyhr, lashed out at the new coalition saying on Twitter that “Denmark does not need a government across the center.”

She instead advocated a government that addresses climate and environmental issues and takes care of people with low incomes. “Unfortunately, that is not what we will get.”

Frederiksen’s party won 28% of the vote, or 50 seats in the Nov. 1 vote, and the Liberals won 13.3% and 23 seats. Løkke Rasmussen and his Moderates got 9% or 16 seats.

The last time Denmark was governed by a centrist coalition was in 1978 when the Social Democrats teamed up with the Liberals. That lasted eight months.

Frederiksen was forced to call the vote earlier this year amid the fallout from her government’s contentious decision to cull millions of minks as a pandemic response measure. The cull and chilling images of mass graves of minks haunted Frederiksen since 2020 and eventually led to cracks in the center-left bloc.

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Danish PM: After weeks of talks, deal on centrist govt