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Swedish Party Picks New Chair

The Swedish People’s Party has elected Stefan Wallin as its new chair.

Wallin collected 179 votes to win the position. MP Astrid Thors came in second with 85 votes. The two other candidates, MP Christina Gestrin and Vice-chair Jan D. Oker-Blom gathered 12 and 16 votes respectively.

Wallin takes on the role of Environmental Minister beginning next year. Jan-Erik Enestam will continue that job during Finland’s term as EU president, allowing the new party chair to concentrate on preparing for parliamentary elections.

“We aim to get back the three spots we loaned out during the last election,” Wallin said. Radical changes in the party’s political line are not expected with the new chair.

Wallin, 39, was born in Vaasa and holds a master’s degree in political science. He has worked as state secretary at the Ministry of Environment since March 2005. He has also been employed as editor of the newspaper Åbo Underrättelser and as a special advisor to Enestam and Ole Norrback. YLE24, Finnish News Agency

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