• Portugal opposition leader raises prospect of leftist coalition govt


    LISBON: The head of Portugal’s main opposition Socialists on Monday raised the prospect of forming an “alternative government” with two other leftist parties, after inconclusive elections saw the ruling center-right fall short of an outright victory. The Socialists came second in the October 4 polls, trailing Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho’s Portugal Ahead coalition, which took 38.9 percent of votes despite overseeing four years of painful austerity in the bailed-out country, although it lost its absolute parliamentary majority. After scoffing at the idea of forming a grand coalition with the center-right, Socialist leader Antonio Costa on Monday said he had identified “points of convergence” in talks with the radical Left Bloc, linked to Greece’s anti-austerity Syriza party.



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