Spain’s King Felipe asks PSOE leader Pedro Sanchez to form a government

THE Spanish king has invited the left-leaning Partido Socialista’s (PSOE) leader to form a government after it won the most seats in April’s election but fell short of a majority.

King Felipe invited acting Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez to form a government. It comes after the Spanish king met with party leaders to chart a way forward following the snap general election which left no party able to govern on its own.

Sanchez said there was no alternative to a PSOE government.

“It’s a responsibility I assume with honour,” he said.

PSOE won 123 seats in the election, more than 50 short of the 176 needed for an absolute majority.

Talks between Sanchez and other leaders are now set to continue as the PSOE leader attempts to build a coalition.

Sanchez was initially expected to invite the leftist Podemos to support his party in the Congress of Deputies.

But that party’s poor showing in May’s local, regional and European elections has left it with less clout to demand concessions from Sanchez.

Podemos leader Pablo Iglesias had initially demanded that members of his party be allowed to serve as ministers in a full coalition government.

Sanchez could side with the centrist Ciudadanos who won 57 seats in the election. But there is little appetite for the deal among the PSOE rank and file and Ciudadanos leader had previously ruled out joining a PSOE government while Sanchez remains its leader.

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Written by

Joe Gerrard

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