Poul Schlüter

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Poul Schlüter
Poul Schluter portrait 2005.jpg
Schlüter in 2005
22nd Prime Minister of Denmark
In office
10 September 1982 – 25 January 1993
MonarchMargrethe II
Preceded byAnker Jørgensen
Succeeded byPoul Nyrup Rasmussen
Justice Minister of Denmark
In office
3 October 1989 – 5 October 1989
Preceded byHans Peter Clausen
Succeeded byHans Engell
Leader of the Conservative People's Party
In office
Preceded byErik Ninn-Hansen
Succeeded byHenning Dyremose
Personal details
Born (1929-04-03) 3 April 1929 (age 91)
Tønder, Denmark
Political partyConservative People's Party
Alma materUniversity of Copenhagen

Poul Holmskov Schlüter (Danish pronunciation: [ˈpʰʌwl ˈhʌlmskʌw ˈslytɐ], born 3 April 1929)[1] is a Danish politician who served as Prime Minister of Denmark from 1982 to 1993.[2][3][4] He was the first member of the Conservative People's Party to become Prime Minister, as well as the first conservative to hold the office since 1901.

Early life and career[edit]

Born in Tønder, south Jutland, he graduated from the University of Copenhagen in 1957 with a degree in law, and joined the bar in 1960. Schlüter was a member of the Folketing (Danish parliament) for the Conservative People's Party from 1964 to 1994. He was also Chairman of the Conservative People's Party from 1974 to 1977 and from 1981 to 1993.

Prime Minister[edit]

Poul Schlüter and Lisbeth Schlüter with President Reagan and Nancy Reagan in Cross Hall, 10 September 1985.

In 1982, after Prime Minister Anker Jørgensen was forced to resign, Schlüter cobbled together a four-party coalition and was appointed his successor. During his time as Prime Minister, he was named "Nordic Politician of the Year" (in 1984). He has since been granted a large number of Danish and international awards and medals.

Previously, he had served as a member of the Council of Europe from 1971 to 1974, and had headed the Danish Delegation to the Nordic Council, where he served as a member of the Council Presidium, in 1978 and 1979. He retired as Prime Minister in 1993 after an inquiry found that he had misinformed the Danish Parliament. The case was known as the Tamil Case (Danish: Tamilsagen), as it involved asylum requests from Tamil refugees.[5]

When Schlüter resigned in 1993, he attempted to have Uffe Ellemann Jensen (Venstre) appointed as acting prime minister until Henning Dyremose (Conservative) could take over. The attempt was dropped as royal cabinet secretary Niels Eilschou Holm considered the maneuver unconstitutional. Instead, Poul Nyrup Rasmussen (Social Democrats) were appointed prime minister following a "Queen's round".[6]

On 21 July 1989, while still prime minister, he married the Danish ballet dancer Anne Marie Vessel.[7]

Later life[edit]

Following his retirement as Prime Minister in 1993, Schlüter served as a member of the European Parliament from 1994 to 1999, the first three years as Vice-President of the body.

In 2003, Schlüter was appointed by the Swedish Minister of Co-operation as her special envoy to promote freedom of movement in the Nordic countries. Poul Schlüter was to work on ways of increasing individual freedom of movement and present specific proposals to the Nordic Council Session in October 2003.

In 2004, Poul Schlüter co-founded the first Danish free-market think tank CEPOS, and gave the opening speech at CEPOS' opening reception at the Hotel D'Angleterre in Copenhagen.[8]


National honours[edit]

Foreign honours[edit]


  • Schlüter, Poul (1999). Sikken et liv [What a Life]. autobiography (in Danish). Aschehoug. ISBN 8711113197.


  1. ^ Profile of Poul Schlüter
  2. ^ Poul Schlüter Den Store Danske, Gyldendals åbne encyclopædi
  3. ^ "DECISION FOR EUROPE; Danes Will Vote Again on Europe, But Treaty May See Some Changes". The New York Times. 23 September 1992. Retrieved 17 September 2011.
  4. ^ "EU gravy train must run to new timetable". The Independent. UK. 8 November 1996. Retrieved 17 September 2011.
  5. ^ Thi kendes for ret. Dokument. Rigsrettens dom over forhenværende justitsminister Erik Ninn- Hansen afsagt 22. juni 1995. Weekendavisen, 23 June 1995, 1._sektion, Side 3
  6. ^ Klarskov, Kristian (26 May 2020). "Da ambassadøren måtte råbe ad USA: »Hm, det var ikke helt oppe i 'fuck', vel. Men det var noget i retning af: 'Hvad fanden tænker I på?«". Politiken (in Danish). Retrieved 26 May 2020.
  7. ^ Harding, Merete. "Poul Schlüter" (in Danish). Gyldendal: Dansk Biografisk Leksikon. Retrieved 3 May 2019.
  8. ^ "Poul Schlüter". Biography (in Danish). CEPOS. Archived from the original on 6 January 2011. Retrieved 9 September 2012.
  9. ^ a b c 3 orders worn by Poul 24 March 2017
  10. ^ a b c 1 danish and 2 foreign orders worn by Poul 24 March 2017

Further reading[edit]

  • Wilsford, David, ed. Political leaders of contemporary Western Europe: a biographical dictionary (Greenwood, 1995) pp. 401–5.

External links[edit]