Head of Danish populist party to resign

AP News
Posted: Aug 08, 2012 6:32 AM
Head of Danish populist party to resign

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — The longtime leader of the populist Danish political party that pushed some of Europe's strictest immigration policies says she will resign next month to make room for younger blood.

Pia Kjaersgaard, known for her anti-Muslim rhetoric, has steered the Danish People's Party since she co-founded it in 1995, helping it become the Scandinavian country's third largest political force.

Although in opposition, it held the role of kingmaker and helped secure the power of minority center-right governments in 2001-2011.

During her leadership, the party was able to push for strict immigration laws, which she claims stemmed the influx of radical Muslims into Denmark.

The 65-year-old is expected to step down at the party's congress on Sept. 15-16.