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Finland's former PM Sanna Marin leaves parliament for Blair foundation

 former Prime Minister of Finland Sanna Marin waves from the stage before her resignation speech on 1 September
former Prime Minister of Finland Sanna Marin waves from the stage before her resignation speech on 1 September Copyright Markku Ulander/Lehtikuva/AP
Copyright Markku Ulander/Lehtikuva/AP
By Saskia O'Donoghue with AFP
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The 37-year-old politician made the announcement following her decision to step down as her party's leader last week.

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Finland's former Prime Minister, Sanna Marin, has announced she's leaving parliament to join Tony Blair's foundation.

Marin was narrowly defeated in April's elections and stepped down from the leadership of her Social Democrats party last week.

She says she has been appointed as strategic advisor to the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change, a London-based policy think tank headed up by the former British Prime Minister.

Refusing to rule out a future return to Finnish politics, Marin told the press: "I feel that this assignment is such that it will benefit the whole of Finland as well".

She has previously spoken of the "great honour" of having led the country's government for three and a half years, but also admitted to having experienced "exceptionally difficult times".

Marin led the country through COVID-19 lockdowns and the ensuing economic turmoil and, more recently, has been a vocal supporter of Ukraine after Russia's invasion, successfully leading Finland to end its military non-alignment in favour of NATO membership.

Taking office in 2019, she was the world's youngest prime minister at age 34, attracting attention around the globe.

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