Muslim Humza Yusaf becomes Scotland's new nationalist leader

The new strongman of the pro-independence party is set to become the first Muslim to head the Scottish government.

Humza Yusaf was named the new leader of the Scottish Nationalist Party on Monday. The until now health secretary in the Scottish Government obtained 52% of the votes to lead his party. This opens the way for Yusaf to become the next first minister of Scotland after Sturgeon's resignation.

The Scottish Nationalist Party works for independence from the United Kingdom and reintegration into Europe. Its last leader, Nicola Sturgeon, resigned in February 2023 at the height of the party's crisis, which is progressively losing popular support and aims to call yet another independence referendum. The party's controversial trans law and allegations of fraudulent funding ultimately pushed Sturgeon to resign. The party lost 30,000 members in just over two years, in addition to lowering support for independence to less than 45%.

Yusaf consequently becomes the first Muslim to lead the party and, if all goes according to plan, to become the first chief minister of this denomination as well. According to Yusaf's first statements as party leader, his goals are to restore Scotland's social welfare and lead the country to independence from the United Kingdom.