Astrid Thors

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Astrid Thors

Astrid Thors (born 6 November 1957, Helsinki) is the High Commissioner on National Minorities (HCNM) of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE). A Finnish-Swedish politician, formerly of the Swedish People's Party, Thors is a Candidate of Law and held several senior jobs before being elected to the European Parliament. She served there between 1996 and 2004. She was elected to the Parliament of Finland in 2003. From 2005–2007 she chaired the Swedish Assembly of Finland.

After the 2007 elections she was chosen to be the new Minister of Migration and European Affairs in Matti Vanhanen's second cabinet.

During 2007 and 2011 Thors became a target of the increasing anti-immigration and anti-EU sentiment. She received death threats[1][2] that were consequently investigated by the police, and faced a lot of criticism, in parliament and especially on chat and blogging sites. This regardless of the fact that during her term, the Finnish immigration policy continued to tighten outside the EU directives. The critique Minister Thors faced subsequently led to a decision not to continue this ministerial position in Prime Minister Katainen's government, and immigration policy was returned under the Interior Minister's wings and EU policy was given to the new position of the Minister of European Affairs and Foreign Trade.

On 17 July 2013, she was appointed OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities.[3]



Preceded by
post created
Minister for EU and immigration (Finland)
Succeeded by
Päivi Räsänen (as Minister of Internal Affairs), Alexander Stubb (as Minister for European Affairs and Foreign Trade)