World

Spain PM starts talks with main opposition party in bid to form government

Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy will meet with the leader of the main opposition party to launch complicated talks on forming a coalition or minority government after his party won the most votes in national elections but fell short of a parliamentary majority.

Rajoy meets Wednesday with Socialist Party leader Pedro Sanchez.

Sunday's election gave Rajoy's Popular Party 123 seats in the 350-member lower house of parliament, down from the 186 won in 2001. The Socialists got 90 seats, followed by the far-left Podemos and allies with 69 and the business-friendly Ciudadanos with 40.

Spain has never had a "grand coalition" of the Socialist and Popular parties.

The Socialists say they would not abstain in a parliamentary confidence vote in a move allowing a Rajoy-led minority government.