Micheál Martin made taoiseach after parties back deal


Micheál Martin

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Micheál Martin is expected to be taoiseach (prime minister) for two and a half years

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin has been elected taoiseach (Irish prime minister) at a special meeting of the Irish parliament.

On Friday, members of Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and the Green Party backed a programme for government, paving the way for an historic coalition.

Voters went to the polls in a general election in February but no party received a majority.

Coalition talks were then halted by the coronavirus pandemic.

The two larger parties needed the support of the Greens to have a working majority in the Irish parliament (the Dáil).

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Media captionWhat challenges lie ahead for the new Irish government?

The party leaders and their negotiating teams reached agreement on a coalition deal earlier in June.

He was elected by the Dáil in a speical sitting on Saturday at the Convention Centre Dublin, rather than at Leinster House, due to Covid-19 physical distancing rules.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson tweeted: “Congratulations to Ireland on forming a new Government and to Micheal Martin TD on becoming Taoiseach. Ireland is our closest neighbour, good friend and ally on issues such as climate change, the global fight against Covid-19 and our shared values on human rights and democracy.”





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