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Austrian Greens, Conservatives Reach Coalition Agreement

© REUTERS / Lisi NiesnerHead of Austria's Green Party Werner Kogler (right) and Head of People's Party (OVP) Sebastian Kurz (left)
Head of Austria's Green Party Werner Kogler (right) and Head of People's Party (OVP) Sebastian Kurz (left) - Sputnik International
Leader of the Austria's conservative People's Party (OVP), Sebastian Kurz, who had been granted a mandate to form a cabinet, expressed in December 2019 his intention to form a stable government by mid-January.

On Wednesday, after final discussions with the opposition Greens party, it was reported that both parties had reached a coalition deal, Reuters said, citing a spokesperson for the Greens.

Snap parliamentary elections were held in Austria on 29 September. According to final data from the Ministry of Internal Affairs, Kurz’s party won with 37.5 percent of the vote. Following the talks with all political parties represented in the country’s parliament, Kurz announced on 11 November that OVP would begin negotiations on forming a coalition government with the Green Party that is in fourth place with a record of 13.9 percent of the vote.

It will reportedly mark the first time that the Green party has been in power, after Kurz's alliance collapsed in a political scandal - dubbed by media 'Ibiza scandal' - which triggered the snap elections in September 2019.

A still image from a footage shot in Ibiza, Spain in July 2017 that has caused Austrian politician Heinz-Christian Strache to step down as vice chancellor and Freedom Party leader - Sputnik International
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In May, then vice-chancellor and leader of the Freedom Party of Austria (FPO), Heinz-Christian Strache, was forced to resign from both posts due to a leaked 2017 video featuring him discussing a deal with an alleged niece of a Russian oligarch at a villa on the Spanish island of Ibiza. The woman was later revealed to be a Bosnian student who was paid for the setup.

The so-called Ibiza scandal led to a major cabinet reshuffle and forced Kurz to withdraw his party from a coalition with the FPO and call snap elections, while the former chancellor was dismissed, following a no-confidence vote.

The Greens chief, Werner Kogler, reportedly said earlier that all major issues dividing his party and conservatives had been cleared.

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