Pakistan-origin Humza Yousaf becomes Scotland’s first Muslim leader

LONDON – (HRNW) – Humza Yousaf, the man set to become Scotland’s first Muslim leader after a bruising contest to replace Nicola Sturgeon, is an experienced minister who faces a tough task uniting the Scottish National Party around its independence bid.

Announced the winner in the race, which will see him become first minister in Scotland’s semi-autonomous government, Yousaf will be the first Muslim to lead a country in Western Europe.

A close Sturgeon ally, he has been considered a continuity candidate, and his victory in the SNP’s leadership vote signals that the party will not abandon its progressive policies.

He has however distanced himself from her planned route to independence, saying the party needs to get back to making the case for independence, rather than endlessly debating process.

He will also have to try to unify the party after a brutal leadership campaign that exposed divisions among the candidates over their approach to independence and social issues.