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Five facts about Priti Patel, UK's first Indian-origin home secretary

Newly appointed Britain's Home Secretary Priti Patel leaves Downing Street, in London, Britain July 24, 2019. Photograph:( Reuters )

Reuters LONDON Jul 25, 2019, 08.08 AM (IST)

Britain’s new Prime Minister Boris Johnson named Priti Patel as interior minister, marking a political comeback for the former international development minister.

Priti Patel replaces Pakistani-origin Sajid Javid, who moves to the Treasury department as the first ethnic minority Chancellor of the Exchequer.

"I am deeply honoured to be appointed as Home Secretary by our new Prime Minister @borisjohnson. Looking forward to working @ukhomeoffice to prepare our Country for leaving the EU, leading on matters of national security & public safety & keeping our borders secure," Patel tweeted, in reference to her new job at the helm of the UK Home Office.

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1: Patel, 47, resigned as International Development minister in November 2017 over undisclosed meetings with Israeli officials that breached diplomatic protocol.

2: She campaigned to leave the European Union in 2016, and since leaving government has been an outspoken critic of former Prime Minister Theresa May’s approach to Brexit.

3: Earlier this week, Patel, who also served as a junior Treasury minister, released a report on the British economy arguing for lower taxes and for a new Bank of England mandate more focused on asset price inflation and financial imbalances.

4: Patel is English-born to Indian parents. In the EU referendum campaign, she launched an appeal to “Save the British Curry” which argued that a post-Brexit immigration system would be fairer to those from outside the EU and ease a shortage of chefs for Indian restaurants in Britain.

5: Former British leader David Cameron touted Patel as Britain’s first Indian-heritage prime minister during a huge rally at Wembley stadium in 2015 to mark the visit of Indian leader Narendra Modi.

Story highlights

Priti Patel replaces Pakistani-origin Sajid Javid, who moves to the Treasury department as the first ethnic minority Chancellor of the Exchequer.