Luxembourg. An eavesdropping and corruption scandal that was unveiled in July usually shook Luxembourg calm and caused the government to fall. A parliamentary inquiry presented information that the intelligence service SREL bought luxury cars as bribes and listened to politicians, activists and businessmen. Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker was accused of failing to monitor SREL properly. He was considered have spent too much time on the assignment as chairman of the Eurogroup, an assignment he left at the beginning of the year.
According to Countryaah, the scandal prompted the Socialist Party LSAP, which was a member of the coalition government with Juncker’s Christian Democratic CSV, to demand fresh elections. Juncker, who had been prime minister for 18 years, announced his departure but remained as acting head of government.
The new election was held in October. CSV lost some, but remained the biggest party with 23 of the 60 seats. LSAP and the Liberal DP were given 13 seats each and the Green Party 6, and the three parties decided to form government together. Luxembourg thus got its first government without the Christian Democrats since the 1970s. In early December, the new government took office with Liberal Xavier Bettel as prime minister.