© Cour grand-ducale / Sophie Margue / tous droits réservés
While a second blue, red and green Gambia coalition already seems to be at arm's length, the usual procedures must be respected.
At 5.30pm on Tuesday it was officially announced that the Grand Duke has appointed Xavier Bettel, former prime minister and lead candidate of the Democratic Party (DP), to the role of 'formateur and thus with the formation of a new government.
This follows a meeting earlier today between the Grand Duke and Martine Solovieff, the so-called informant (informateur; more below). Solovieff informed the Grand Duke of the various parties' positions, resulting in Xavier Bettel being named as formateur.
Formateur is the French name for a politician who is appointed to lead the formation of a coalition government. The formateur is usually a representative of the largest party (by share of votes/seats) in a future coalition.
Xavier Bettel will meet with possible coalition partners at 9.30am on Wednesday. Bettel plans to have seven people per party at the meeting and 11 to 12 different task forces will be created.
According to RTL information, DP politician Corrine Cahen is leading the coalition talks for the Democratic Party as the head of the delegation. Pierre Gramegna and Claude Meisch will be representing the southern constituency, Fernand Etgen is representing the north, Lex Delles the east, and Lydie Polfer and Claude Lamberty will both enter the talks as representatives for the centre.
Felix Braz will be heading the Greens delegation, which will also include party president Christian Kmiotek, François Bausch, Carole Dieschbourg, Josée Lorsché, Sam Tanson and Claude Turmes.
The names of politicians who will be representing the socialist LSAP party during the discussions have not yet been revealed.
Chronology of events
After the Grand Duke named attorney general Martine Solovieff as his 'informant' (informateur) on Monday evening, the government formation process continued on Tuesday with talks between Solovieff and the leaders of each party.
The party presidents presented Solovieff with their interpretation of the election results and, as the Grand Duke's informant, she will pass this information on to the head of state.
According to information received by RTL, Solovieff has already met will all party leaders, which includes the top four parties in the 2018 elections: The Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party (LSAP), the Greens, The Democratic Party (DP) and the Christian Social People's Party (CSV).
At 4.30pm, Solovieff came out of the Grand Ducal palace with but one comment: "Mission accomplished", providing no further details.
The Grand Duke will now have to appoint a so called "formateur" in charge of forming a new government, based on the information provided to him by his Solovieff.
Xavier Bettel, Luxembourg's PM during the last legislative period, urged all those involved to speed the process up because of an important EU summit in Brussels on Wednesday evening.
2013: Grand Duke appoints informant for the first time
After an election, it is the Grand Duke's duty to appoint someone to form the new government while respecting the results of the election.
Should he suspect that forming a new government could be more difficult than expected, he can appoint an informant to carry out talks with all parties and provide the Grand Duke with additional information and even suggestions to help him choose a "formateur".
2013: was an exceptional year in Luxembourg politics.
The results of the general election left the CSV party as the party that had received the most votes, even though they lost three seats that year.
Despite this moderate loss, then-Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker, who was the lead candidate for the CSV that year, expected to be appointed "formateur" by the Grand Duke and to start coalition talks with the DP.
However, it soon emerged that the DP, the LSAP and the Greens had other plans and were considering the idea of forming a tripartite coalition without the CSV.
Grand Duke Henri was caught between a rock and a hard place, with Juncker urging him to make him the government formateur and Bettel urging the Grand Duke to appoint an informant instead.
A debate broke out about the interpretation of the vote and, by extension, the will of the people. DP politician Xavier Bettel encountered a lot of pushback, even from parts of his own party.
Two days after the election, an informant was appointed by the Grand Duke.
Bettel was later appointed as the new government formateur, much to the dismay of the CSV.
For the first time in a long time, the CSV party had to take on the role of an opposition party and the DP, the Greens and LSAP formed a coalition government.
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