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The world's youngest national leader

Sebastian Kurz, 31, speaks at an election party last night. Photo: Matthias Schrader / AP

Austria's conservative People's Party, which is center-right but has shifted further right on immigration recently, is set to win the country's general election (at about 31% of the vote) and launch 31-year old Sebastian Kurz as the world's youngest national leader, the BBC reports.

Why it matters: This continues the global tide that produced Brexit and President Trump, and was seen just last month in Germany, with an electoral breakthrough by the far right that stunned Merkel. It also would set Austria to the right after years of centrist leaders in power.

  • Who he is: "Kurz served as Europe's youngest-ever foreign minister, after he was appointed in 2013 aged just 27. ... Nicknamed 'Wunderwuzzi' (very roughly translated as 'wonder hotshot'), he has been compared to the young leaders of France and Canada, Emmanuel Macron and Justin Trudeau."
  • The main issue: "Immigration ... Kurz moved his party to the right in the wake of Europe's 2015 refugee crisis. ... He [pledged] to shut down migrant routes to Europe, cap benefit payments to refugees, and bar immigrants from receiving benefits until they have lived in Austria for five years."

Go deeper: What to know about Austria's election

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