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Vilnius Vice-Mayor Gintautas Paluckas has been elected as the leader of the Lithuanian Social Democratic Party, the country's largest party.
Gintautas Paluckas and Mindaugas Sinkevičius
Gintautas Paluckas and Mindaugas Sinkevičius
© DELFI / Tomas Vinickas

During the first direct LSDP elections held on Saturday, Paluckas, 37, secured 5,190 votes, while his competitor, Economy Minister Mindaugas Sinkevičius, was supported by 4,781 members. The results are yet to be endorsed by the electoral committee for the party's leadership.

The new leader said he would work to put more Social Democratic priorities on the agenda of the coalition government. In his words, the Social Democrats that are part of the ruling majority also want more dialogue with their coalition partners, the Lithuanian Farmers and Greens Union.

"Our political priorities, as Social Democrats, are on the government's agenda, the government's program and the plan of actions. Relations is another thing. The format of communication should be continuous, there should be meetings of the coalition and the leadership, not just held on the occasion when tensions are so high that they leak to the public," said Paluckas.

After Paluckas won the elections for leadership of the Social Democratic Party, Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis stated that the coalition agreement would not be reconsidered.

After the October 2017 parliamentary elections, Paluckas expressed doubts whether the Social Democrats should enter into coalition with LFGU. He said that the Social Democratic Party's participation in the coalition does not benefit the party, noting that stepping back and failing to take the opportunity to realize the left-wing political agenda in Lithuania would be irresponsible.

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