Finland's center-right coalition survives confidence vote in Parliament over education

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Finland's center-right government has overwhelmingly survived its first vote of confidence in Parliament, four months after taking office.

Lawmakers voted 104-60 Wednesday in favor of Prime Minister Juha Sipila's three-party Cabinet, with 36 absent or abstaining.

The approval, quashing a motion of no confidence by opposition parties over government proposals for cutbacks in education, was expected as the coalition commands a clear majority in the 200-member Parliament with 124 lawmakers. Finnish governments traditionally face several confidence votes during their regular four-year terms.

In April, Sipila's Center Party won the national election after eight years in opposition. He formed a three-party government with the conservative National Coalition Party and the populist, EU-skeptic Finns Party which joined a ruling coalition for the first time after sizeable gains in the election.