August 23, 2018 / 1:28 AM / 4 months ago

Australia PM unlikely to contest another leadership vote - Sky News

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull speaks at a news conference in Brussels, Belgium April 24, 2018. REUTERS/Francois Walschaerts

CANBERRA (Reuters) - Embattled Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is unlikely to contest a second leadership ballot, making way for Treasurer Scott Morrison as a surprise challenger for the top job, Sky News reported on Thursday.

Turnbull narrowly won a party-room vote on Tuesday by 48 to 35 against former home affairs minister Peter Dutton. But the unconvincing victory left him vulnerable to another challenge.

Dutton called for a second ballot on Thursday, while three senior ministers backed the call, saying Turnbull had lost the majority support of the ruling Liberal party.

Reporting by Swati Pandey; Editing by Michael Perry

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