Jimmie Akesson, the architect of Sweden’s rising far-right

Jimmie Akesson, the head of the far-right Sweden Democrats, is a charismatic speaker who has succeeded in attracting mainstream voters…

Jimmie Akesson, the head of the far-right Sweden Democrats, is a charismatic speaker who has succeeded in attracting mainstream voters with his efforts to cleanse the party of its neo-Nazi roots.

With his Sweden Democrats tipped to get around 20 percent of the vote in the September 9 election, a record high for the party, Akesson has become a key adversary of Prime Minister Stefan Lofven.

The anti-immigration populist has seen his political star rise after the arrival of more than 160,000 asylum seekers in 2015.

Despite his relative youth, the 39-year-old will be standing in his fourth legislative elections in 12 years at the helm of SD, which has steadily climbed in popularity to become one of Sweden’s biggest parties.

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