Who are the most powerful non-white politicians in Europe?

Europe includes Ireland and the UK as well, and non-white can mean biracial, multiracial, or any full or part obvious and known non-white heritage. I’m just curious about race and Europe v. America in elected and or appointed officials.

Paul Boateng was an MP, UK Cabinet Minister (Chief Secretary to the Treasury) and is now High Commissioner to South Africa. He was the first black Cabinet Minister.

The former Lord President of the Privy Council Baroness Amos is black. She was also an MP, Cabinet Minister (Secretary for Overseas Development) and Leader of the House of Lords.

There are other MPs and Peers as well (e.g. Lord Darzi is of Asian descent).

Is Hispanic “non-white”?

In that case I see your MP and raise you the President of Spain.

ETA: wiki seems to consider spaniards “white hispanic”, so never you mind.

Shahid Malik, a British-Asian Muslim, is perhaps the highest-ranking non-white British politician at present, as Minister for International Development. However, the proportion of non-white MPs overall is less than a third of that in the national population. (2.3% vs 8%, link (pdf))

It’s improving, but it’s happening very slowly. Aren’t candidates selected by the constituency party? Does that have an effect, do you think?

Speaking as an Anglo-Asian I don’t particularly worry about the ethnicity of my local MP (currently it’s Malcolm Wicks), I would rather they be selected on their ability (although I know that that doesn’t happen either), but I acknowledge that there should be more ethnic minority representation in both Houses to more accurately reflect modern Britain. For that matter we could do with more women in Parliament too.

Staying with the UK, Baroness Scotland is the current Attorney General. An appointed working peer rather than an elected MP, but on the fringes of the Cabinet these days.

While in France, Rachida Dati is Sarkozy’s Minister of Justice.

Yes, and it’s hardly surprising that most Asian MPs represent or have represented areas with large Asian populations.

While I don’t envisage anybody here disagreeing that it would be better to see a more accurate reflection of society in the Commons, I strongly dislike any attempts by parties to try to force things in this direction, through women-only shortlists and so on. The whiteness of politics is a symptom rather than the root problem, and distorting the selection process to make the Commons appear to be more representative, isn’t a solution to anything. Put it this way, nobody advocates ‘not-middle-class-upbringing only’ shortlists, but there’s a serious issue with a lack of politicians from poorer backgrounds, too.

I totally agree.

Jumping to Sweden, Nyamko Sabuni is Minister for Integration and Gender Equality (and, while not mentioned in the ministry’s name, consumer and urban affairs as well)

Ricardo Lumengo (an immigrant from Angola), socialist party, was the first black person to be elected to the Conseil National (the Swiss version of the House of Representatives [federal], if you will) in 2007.

What do you know! He has his own website. http://www.ricardolumengo.ch

Somali-born Ayaan Hirsi Ali is a former member of Parliament in the Netherlands. Other non-white European politicians might have higher positions in government, but few are as well-known or influential internationally.

Anna Lo is a Hong Kong-born Alliance Party member of the Northern Ireland Assembly.

Nigerian former asylum seeker, Rotimi Adebari was recently elected Mayor of Portlaoise in the Republic Of Ireland.

However, Rachida Dati was a nobody and owes her job to Sarkozy (and in all likehood, the fact that she was both a woman and member of a minority played a non insignificant part in his choice). Career politicians with a non-European background are strikingly absent in France. I can think of a couple exceptions, but they certainly aren’t prominent figures.

To the best of my knowledge, there are currently no non-white members of the Oireachtas. Moosajee Bhamjee, a South African doctor of Indian descent, represented Co. Clare from 1992 to 1997.