Sweden’s newly elected parliament has voted against Prime Minister Stefan Lofven in a vote of confidence, officially ending his tenure as head of government. Lofven had earlier refused to step down voluntarily.
The dismissal of Lofven, leader of the center-left Social Democratic Party, was anticipated after members of the conservative Alliance announced in advance that they would not support him in Tuesday’s vote.
Political groups on both the left and right achieved the same number of votes in the general election, resulting in neither winning a majority in parliament.
The election resulted in major success for the anti-immigration Sweden Democrats, which won 17.6 percent of the votes. However, neither side of the political center agreed to form a coalition with the party.
Swedish law provides that a vote for a new head of government has to take place no later than two weeks after a new parliament chooses its speaker. Up to four candidacies may be rejected by the Riksdag before an new general election must be called.