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We are so close! Iceland close to getting a female-majority parliament

Iceland celebrated briefly the election of a female-majority parliament on Sunday before a recount produced a result that was just short for the landmark for gender parity in North Atlantic island nations.

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We are so close! Iceland close to getting a female-majority parliament

In Iceland's initial vote count, 33 female candidates won seats in the 63-seat parliament (the Althing), in an election in which centrist parties made the largest gains.

A recount in western Iceland altered the result hours later. Female candidates now have 30 seats. This is an increase from the number of seats at Iceland's 2016 second-most recent election. This is still a record for European women legislators at 48%.

Only a few countries have a majority female legislator, none of which are in Europe. The Inter-Parliamentary Union states that Rwanda is the most populous country in the world, with 61% of its Chamber of Deputies being made up of women. Cuba, Nicaragua, and Mexico are just below the 50% mark. The organization claims that just 25% of all legislators worldwide are women.

After the recount, Olafur Hardarson, a professor of politics, stated that "the female victory remains the main story of these elections."

The voting system in Iceland is divided into six regions. After questions regarding the number of votes cast, the recount was held in western Iceland. These errors are not fully explained, but they are believed to be human error.

The outgoing coalition government headed by Prime Minister Katrin Jansdottir won 37 seats on Saturday, two more than the previous election. It appeared that they would continue to be in power.

In the unpredicted election that saw 10 parties compete for seats, opinion polls suggested a victory of left-leaning parties. The center-right Independence Party won the largest number of votes, with 16 seats and seven of those seats being held by women. The largest gain was made by the centrist Progressive Party, which won 13 seats, five more than in previous elections.

The two parties, along with Jakobsdottir’s Left Green Party, formed Iceland's third-party coalition government before the election. Her party lost several seats but retained eight seats which was in line with poll predictions.

Although the ruling parties have not yet announced whether they will continue to work together, given the overwhelming support of voters, it seems likely. A new government will need to be announced and formed within days, if it is not weeks.

Iceland is a volcanic island nation with a lot of glaciers that has voted for climate change. It is home to about 350,000 people and is located in the North Atlantic. A record-breaking summer in Iceland, with temperatures of above 20 C (68 F) for 59 days, and shrinking glaciers contributing to global warming has been achieved.

However, it didn't seem that this translated into more support for the left-leaning parties who campaigned to reduce carbon emissions by more that Iceland has committed to under the Paris Climate Agreement.

Lenya Run Karim (21-year-old law student from Kurdish immigrant family) was one candidate who saw her victory overturned in the recount.

"These were nine hours," Karim said, which would have made him Iceland's youngest ever lawmaker.

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