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Left leader appointed new Czech prime minister
Social Democratic leader Bohuslav Sobotka named new Czech prime minister
Associated Press
2014-01-17 11:42 PM

PRAGUE (AP) -- President Milos Zeman has appointed the leader of the Social Democratic party as the Czech Republic's new prime minister after the party won October's early parliamentary election.

Friday's appointment of Bohuslav Sobotka means a return to power for his left-wing party for the first time since 2006 elections. Sobotka served as finance minister in 2002-06.

The Social Democrats have signed a deal with two other parties -- the centrist ANO (Yes) movement led by billionaire businessman Andrej Babis and the centrist Christian Democrats -- to form a center-left coalition government.

Sobotka's government is expected to be sworn in by the end of January.

Its formation will end a political crisis triggered by the previous center-right government's collapse over a spying and bribery scandal in June.

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