Source: The Dawn News - World

HELSINKI: Finnish Prime Minister Antti Rinne resig­ned on Tuesday after losing the support of the coalition partner Centre Party, thou­­gh the governing alliance is expected to stay in power to avoid a snap election.

A Social Democrat who has headed the centre-left five-party government since June, Rinne handed his resignation to President Sauli Niinisto, who asked the government to stay on in a caretaker capacity until a new go­vernment has been appoi­nted, the presidency said.

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“All of the governing parties have confidence in me, except the Centre Party. When I was told why they no longer have confidence in me, I made the decision to resign,” Rinne said.

The Centre Party was angered after the prime mi­­n­­­­­­­ister was accused of lying by the head of Finland Post — the culmination of a long-running dispute over re­­fo­rms to the pay and conditions for some postal workers.

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“All of the government parties are committed to the... government programme. If (me) being prime minister jeopardises the government programme, it is better that I steer clear of it,” Rinne told reporters.

The Social Democrats, Finland’s biggest party, will now appoint a successor to try to form a new government, which could take days or even weeks.

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Sanna Marin, the party’s number two behind Rinne and the current minister of transport, has already said she would be willing to take over.

Published in Dawn, December 4th, 2019

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