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Babis appointed Czech premier

ReutersPRAGUE (Reuters) — Czech billionaire businessman Andrej Babis was appointed prime minister on Wednesday after his ANO party came first in an October election, and he must now focus on securing parliamentary backing for a minority administration.

Running on pledges to fight migration and make the state more efficient, ANO won 29.6 percent of the vote, nearly three times the support won by second-placed center-right Civic Democrats.

Despite that strong showing, it is unclear whether Babis will be able to win a confidence vote for his government by mid-January as required by the Constitution. He also faces the threat of prosecution in connection with his business interests.

ANO holds 78 seats in the 200-seat lower house but has so far failed to win the backing of any of the other eight parties. Should he lose such a vote, Babis would stay in power until a new arrangement is found. But given his party’s size, it would also most likely have to lead any other arrangement.Speech

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