AP News

Socialists drop out of Denmark's government


COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — A small socialist party on Thursday quit Denmark's coalition government amid discord over plans to sell a stake in state-controlled Dong Energy to Goldman Sachs and other investors.

The other two parties in the center-left government back the sale but the Socialist People's Party was split on the issue.

After more than a year of infighting, party leader Annette Vilhelmsen resigned Thursday and the party withdrew its six ministers from the 23-member Cabinet.

The move weakens Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt's coalition but she said it would stay in power as a two-party minority government because it still has the support of the socialists in Parliament.

Later Thursday, Parliament's Finance Committee approved the sale of a 19 percent stake in Dong Energy to Goldman Sachs for 8 billion kroner ($1.5 billion).

The deal is intended to boost the ailing finances of Dong Energy, Denmark's largest energy company.


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