Norwegian parties conclude coalition government talks

solberg_stemmer980Norway‘s Conservative Party leader Erna Solberg concluded exploratory talks Monday with three other parties on forming a coalition government. Solberg, the leaders of the right-wing populist Progress Party, and the smaller centrist Liberals and Christian Democrats were due late Monday to comment on the outcome of the talks after they consult with their party boards and caucuses. The four parties won 96 seats in an election three weeks ago, well clear of the 85 needed for a majority in the 169-seat legislature. Their win unseated a red-green coalition led by Labour Party leader Jens Stoltenberg for the past eight years. The conservatives last led a government in 1990.Solberg and other leaders have been tight-lipped about the talks.

The centrist parties differ with the two main parties on several issues, including not allowing oil drilling off the northern Lofoten islands, and on immigration policy.

(dpa)