Thursday 18 January 2018

Read all about it: international media focus on Varadkar's rise

Minister Leo Varadkar. Photo: Colin O'Riordan
Minister Leo Varadkar. Photo: Colin O'Riordan
Kevin Doyle

Kevin Doyle

Leo Varadkar's expected elevation to the office of Taoiseach is already making headlines around the world.

International media is presenting his central position in Irish politics as a "huge generation change in Ireland's political life".

CNN has run a profile on Mr Varadkar, and has reported that while he "appears to be a step away from traditional Irish politics, a check of his voting record and of his campaign promises more of a makeover than an overhaul".

The 'New York Post' focuses on his background, stating: "Ireland, a devoutly Catholic country that decriminalised homosexuality only 24 years ago, is poised to elect its first openly gay prime minister next month."

In London, the 'Independent' says Ireland is on the verge of "a move that would give the once-staunchly Catholic country its first openly gay leader and its first of Asian immigrant descent".

'The Times of India' told its readers that Mr Varadkar's election would be "a political earthquake".

It described the minister's story as "unique".

It says: "Varadkar's father is an immigrant from Mumbai, and he'll become the second serving European leader of Indian origin, alongside Portugal's (Goan) Antonio Costa.

"Also, just two years ago, on his 36th birthday, the star campaigner 'came out' in public about his homosexuality," it says, adding: "Varadkar plays down both race and sexuality, instead focusing on his evident competence in office."

The 'Mumbai Mirror' ran a headline: 'A Mumbaikar, Leo, Could Be Next Ireland PM'.

It says the Mumbai interest in the story is "inescapable".

Irish Independent

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