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Left Green leader made head of Iceland’s new government

FILE – In this file photo dated Saturday Oct. 28, 2017, Katrin Jakobsdottir leader of the Left Green Movement after casting her ballot, during the general election in Reykjavik, Iceland. Iceland has announced a broad new governing three-party coalition, Thursday Nov. 30, 2017, with Jakobsdottir as prime minister, a month after Icelanders voted for the third time in four years.(AP Photo/Brynjar Gunnarsson, FILE)

LONDON (AP) — Katrin Jakobsdottir, the leader of Iceland’s Left Green Movement, was named as the Nordic island nation’s prime minister Thursday after three parties formed a broad governing coalition in hopes of moving the country out of the cycle of crises that triggered three elections in the past four years.
The coalition, which includes parties from both sides of the political spectrum, was announced following more than a month of talks. Iceland has been roiled by partisan divisions since its economy was ravaged by the global financial crisis.
The conservative Independence Party, which led the previous government, took the largest share of the vote in the Oct. 28 election, but failed to secure a majority in the parliament, known as the Althingi. The Left Green Movement finished second with 17 percent. A record eight parties won seats.
A series of scandals that began with the collapse of Iceland’s three major banks in 2008 gave voters a sense of fatigue and caused rapid turnover in the Althingi. Jakobsdottir, who had been a favorite to win, said before the election that she would emphasize stability and consensus decision-making.
“That may be the most radical approach in today’s political climate — stability,” Jakobsdottir, 41, said in an interview with The Associated Press at the time.
Jakobsdottir holds a graduate degree in Icelandic literature and is now among the world’s youngest leaders.
The Left Green Movement, the Independence Party and the Progressive Party will form the governing coalition, giving the government 35 seats in the 63-seat Althingi.
Jakobsdottir’s cabinet will be comprised of three members of her Left Green Party, five from the Independence Party and three from the Progressive Party.
“In the new government, parties spanning the political spectrum from left to right intend to establish a new tone,” a statement issued by the new prime minister’s office said.