Ireland’s center-right Fianna Fail party will seek to form a government that does not include left-wing nationalists Sinn Fein, a senior member of the party said following a meeting of lawmakers. “We gave the party leader license to speak to whoever he needs to speak to, with the exception of a Sinn Fein,” senior Fianna Fail lawmaker Niall Collins told Reuters on Thursday.
Two of the three largest parties will need to cooperate to form a government, with Fianna Fail on 38 seats, Sinn Fein on 37 and center-right Fine Gael on 35 in the 160-seat parliament. Fine Gael has already ruled out a deal with Sinn Fein.
The head of Sinn Fein said on Thursday it would be “very, very tricky” to form a government that does not include one of Ireland’s two large center-right parties, Fianna Fail and Fine Gael.
Sinn Fein leader Mary Lou McDonald on Monday said she would attempt to bypass those two parties and form a government of left-wing parties. On Wednesday, the Labour party said it planned to remain in opposition.