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Sanna Marin elected Finland’s, and the world’s youngest, Prime Minister

Social Democrat leader Sanna Marin faces the media after she was elected as the new Prime Minister of Finland in Helsinki on December 10, 2019.

Social Democrat leader Sanna Marin faces the media after she was elected as the new Prime Minister of Finland in Helsinki on December 10, 2019.   | Photo Credit: AP

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The 34-year-old Ms. Marin will struggle to defend her leftist views against coalition partner, the Centre Party, which wants action to boost Finnish employment to pay for the costly welfare state.

Finland’s parliament on December 10 approved the nomination of 34-year-old Social Democrat Sanna Marin as the world’s youngest serving Prime Minister.

Out of the parliament’s 200 members, 99 voted in favour and 70 against her nomination. Thirty deputies were absent.

“I want to build a society in which every child can become anything and in which every human being can live and grow old with dignity,” Ms. Marin tweeted.

Finland’s government resigned last week after the Centre Party said it had lost confidence in Social Democrat Prime Minister Antti Rinne over his handling of a postal strike.

After parliament’s approval, Finland’s President was expected to nominate Ms. Marin’s five-party coalition Cabinet, consisting of 12 female and 7 male Ministers.

But behind the festivities, deep divisions remained between the main coalition partners, Ms. Marin’s Social Democrats and the Centre Party.

Ms. Marin will struggle to defend her leftist views against the Centre Party, which wants action to boost Finnish employment to pay for the costly welfare state. Strikes continued as she took office.

Katri Kulmuni, chairwoman of the Centre Party which holds the balance of power in parliament, defended her decision to oust the outgoing Prime Minister Antti Rinne, accusing him of taking the employees’ side in recent labour market disputes.

Before his resignation, Mr. Rinne defended the publicly-owned postal service’s employees in their labour dispute by saying their employment conditions would not be trampled while his government was in office.

“It became sort of a habit to flag in advance in favour of one side, in matters which should be dealt with cool impartiality,” Ms. Kulmuni wrote in a long post on Facebook.

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Printable version | Jan 28, 2020 8:06:03 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/finland-parliament-approves-worlds-youngest-prime-minister/article30267958.ece

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