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Palestinian National Authority

The PA Ministerial Cabinet List
April 2003 - October 2003

Minister
Ministry
Telephone
Fax
Notes
1.

Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen)

 

Prime Minister
and Interior Minister

 

2959642-7

 

2959648

 

[New] PLO Executive Committee Secretary, One of Fateh movement's founders. Signatory of Oslo Agreement
2.
 

 

Yasser Abed Rabbo
 
 

 

Minister of Cabinet Affairs
 
 

 

 

 

[Old] PLO Executive Committee member. Former Information and Culture Minister – [FIDA].
3. Muhammad Dahlan Minister of State for Security Affairs

 

 

[New] Former Preventive Security Director in the Gaza Strip [Fateh]
4. Saeb Erekat Minister of State for Negotiations Affairs

 

 

[Old] PLC Member (Jericho, Fateh). Former Chief negotiator. Former Local Governance Minister
5. Nabil Shaath
 
Foreign Affairs 02-2447044/5/406/7/10 08-2867334 08-2829260 08-2821655/2482/4090
 
02-2447181 08-2824090/2937
 
[Old] PLC Member, held the international cooperation and planning portfolio for the past ten year. [Fateh]
6.
 

 

Salam Fayyad
 
 

 

Finance
 
 

 

02-2984917/8/140
050-340119
08-2863636/964
 

 

02-2985850
08-2820690
 
 

 

[Old] Former Head of IMF Special Mission in Palestine. Former Arab Bank regional Director in Palestine [Technocrat - Independent]
7.

 

Abdul Karim Abu Salah Justice

 

08-2822231/318

 

08-2867109/20265

 

[New] – PLC member (legal committee head), [Fateh/independent] from Khan Younis
8. Maher al Masri Economy, Trade & Rations 02-2981214-9/12 08-2829545/142/0682 02-2981210-5 08-2824884 [Old] PLC member from Nablus [Fateh]
9. Nabil Kassis
 
Planning
 

 
[Old] Former Minister of Tourism and "Bethlehem-2000" Project. Professor of Physics. [Independent]
10. Nabil Amr Information 02-2954044 02-2954043 [New] Fateh Central Committee member, PLC member [Hebron] and former Parliamentary Affairs Minister.
11. Rafiq al Natsheh Agriculture 02-2987029/6502 08-28291234/4 02-2987028/7422 08-2863926 [Old] PLC member - Former Labor Minister. [Fateh]
12. Kamal Sharafi Health 08-2829301-3/1733-8 09-2384771-6 08-2869809/26295 09-2384777/26295 [New] Physician; PLC member (education and social affairs committee)[North Gaza - Jabalia] - [former PFLP]
13. Naim Abu Al Hummus Education 02-2954490/82600/3/4 08-282004/8824/14 02-2954518 08-2828554 [Old] Former deputy Minister of Education. [Fateh] 
14.

 

Mitri Abu 'Aita

 

Tourism & Antiquities 059-246112 - 02-2770603 08-2829461/2/4866/76 02-2743753/70604 08-2824856 [Old] PLC member. Former Tourism Minister and Transportation and Telecommunications. [Independent]
15. Ghassan Khatib Labor 02-2900375-9 08-2868393/8291/46 02-2900607 08-2868478/22400 [Old] Former JMCC Director. Birzeit University Lecturer. Political Analyst. [Palestinian People's Party, PPP].
16. Azam al-Shawa Energy & Natural Resources 059-480120

 

 

[New] a prominent banker from Gaza and Palestinian Investment Fund board member.
17. Jamal Shobaki Local Governance 02-2322619/1556/240 02-2321240 [New] PLC member (Hebron, Fatah; PLC economic committee head; PLO Central Committee member.
18. Ziad Abu Amr Culture 059-408407
08-2836617

 

 

[New] PLC Member (political committee head); [independent] From Gaza
19. Hamdan Ashour Housing and Public Works

 

 

[New] Fateh Movement Revolutionary Council Secretary
20. Azzam al-Ahmad Telecommunication and Information Technology

 

 

[New] Former PA Minister of Housing and Public Works (with Housing portfolio added on 9 June 02). Former PLO Ambassador to Iraq. A PLC member, was elected in the (Jenin-Fatah).
21. Saedi al-Krunz Transportation

 

 

[New] PLC Member Gaza, Fateh). Former Industry Minister
22. Intisar al Wazir (Um Jihad) Social Affairs 02-2986183/4 08-2829189/20686

 

02-2955723 08-2820686/4730

 

[Old] PLC Member. [Fateh]
23. Hisham Abdul Razeq Prisoners' Affairs 059-402010, 08-2844428

 

 

[Old] A Fateh member of the Legislative Council from Jabalya RC, and a Gaza Strip Fateh leader. He spent several years in Israeli detention. Former State Minister for Prisoners Affairs [Fateh].

Ministers of State without portfolio:

1. Abdul Fatah Hamayel - [New] - PLC member (Al-Bireh/Ramallah - Fateh)

Vacant Ministries:
1. Islamic Waqf (Trust)
2. Sports and Youths
3. Jerusalem

Ministers who left the government:

1. Samir Ghosheh [Orient House Director];
2. Hani al Hasan [Interior Ministry];
3. Dr. Ahmad al-Shibi [Health Ministry];
4. Abdul Aziz Shahin [Rations Ministry];
5. Abdel Rahman Hamad [Energy & Natural Resources Ministry];
6. Zuhair Sourani [Justice Ministry]

Cabinet Secretary:

1. Hakam Bala'wi - [New] - [Old] PLC member (Tulkarem, Fatah), Fatah Central Council member. Former Palestinian ambassador to Tunisia.

Born in Bala, Palestine in 1939, Mr. Balawi is married with four children and seven grandchildren.

Political Career
Elected in 1996 to the PLC representing Tulkarem, Mr. Balawi was Palestine’s Ambassador to Libya from 1973 to 1975 and the Ambassador to Tunisia from 1983 to 1994.
A Fateh activist, Mr. Balawi is a member of the Fateh Central Committee, the Fateh Central Council and the Fateh Revolutionary Council. He was the Deputy Head of the Central Information Committee of Fateh from 1968 to 1978. >From 1994 to 1996, Mr. Balawi served as the Commissioner-General of the National Security Agencies and Secretary of National Security Council. He is the Minister of the Interior representing Occupied Palestine in Council of Arab Interior Ministers. He is a member of the PNC.
The Secretary of the Union of Palestinian Journalists and Writers, Mr. Balawi is the author of several plays and novels.

Education
He holds Diplomas in Administration, Journalism and Education.

Biograhpy of PA Cabinet

1. MAHMOUD ABBAS (ABU MAZEN) – PRIME MINISTER AND MINISTER OF THE INTERIOR (FATEH)

Born in Safad, Palestine in 1935, Mahmoud Abbas, and his family fled Palestine in 1948, becoming refugees in Syria. He lived in exile until 1994, when he came to the Occupied Palestinian Territories as part of the Palestinian negotiation team. He has three children and seven grandchildren with an eighth on the way.
Mahmoud Abbas is also known as Abu Mazen (Father of Mazen), in accordance with Arab tradition in which parents are referred to as Abu (“Father of”) or Um (“Mother of”) the first-born son.

Political Career
Mahmoud Abbas is a founding member of Fateh Movement, the largest political party in the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and in the PLC. Mr. Abbas has been a member of the Fateh Central Committee since 1964 and a member of the Palestinian National Council (PNC – the Palestinian government in exile) since 1968. Since 1980, Mr. Abbas has been a member of the PLO Executive Committee. He has held the post of PLO Secretary-General since 1996. Mr. Abbas is the head of the PLO Negotiations Affairs Department, a post that he has held since 1994.
Previously, he served as the head of the Palestinian Election Committee (1996 to 2002) and the PLO National and International Relations Department (1984 to 2000).
In 1974, he was responsible for opening channels of communications with Israeli peace groups and was the primary force behind the PNC’s decision to work with these groups.
Mr. Abbas is the signatory of the 1993 Declaration of Principles that launched the Oslo Peace Process. In 1995, he signed the Oslo Agreements, also known as the Interim Agreements.

Education
Mr. Abbas holds a Ph.D. in History (Oriental College, Moscow) and a B.A. in Law (Damascus University). He is the author of several books in Arabic including, The Other Side, The Fall of the Netanyahu Government and The Road to Oslo. He enjoys Arabic poetry, classical Arabic music and the study of history.

2. YASSER ABED RABBO – MINISTER OF CABINET AFFAIRS (FIDA)

Born in Jaffa, Palestine in 1945, Yasser Abed Rabbo is a refugee. He is married with two children.

Political Career
Mr. Abed Rabbo previously served as the Minister of Culture and Information, a post he held since 1994. Since 1998, he has headed the PLC Committee for Education, Culture and Science.
Mr. Abed Rabbo has served on the PLO Executive Committee since 1971 and has served as the head of the PLO Department of Information and Culture since 1973. In 1968, Mr. Abed Rabbo was a founding member of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP), a leftist group within the PLO. After 23 years in the DFLP, Mr. Abed Rabbo broke away from the group in 1991 to head the Palestinian Democratic Group, FIDA, a group that came to closer agreement with the peace policies of PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat.
Mr. Abed Rabbo was a member of the Madrid Peace Delegation in 1991. He later served as a senior member of the Palestinian negotiation team, attending all major negotiations, including those conducted at Camp David (2000) and Taba (2001).

Education
Mr. Abed Rabbo holds an M.A. in Economics and Political Science (American University in Cairo). He enjoys reading Arabic poetry and literature.

3. MOHAMMAD DAHLAN – MINISTER OF STATE FOR INTERNAL SECURITY AFFAIRS (FATEH)

Born in 1961 in Khan Yunis Refugee Camp in the Gaza Strip, Mr. Dahlan is a refugee from Hammama, Palestine (now Nitzanim, Israel). He is married with three children.

Political Career
Mr. Dahlan is a long-time member of the Fateh party, founding the Fateh Youth Association in 1981. He was imprisoned by Israel for five years for political activism. In 1988, he was expelled to Jordan by Israel. From exile, Mr. Dahlan helped organize the first intifada (the non-violent Palestinian uprising against Israeli occupation) that lasted from 1987 to 1994. In 1994, Mr. Dahlan returned to the Occupied Palestinian Territories where he headed the Preventive Security Forces in the Gaza Strip, a post from which he resigned in 2002. A senior Palestinian negotiator, Mr. Dahlan participated in the Wye River negotiations (1999) and was a member of the Palestinian negotiation team at Camp David (2000) and Taba (2001).

Education
Mr. Dahlan earned a B.A. in Business Administration (Islamic University of Gaza). He is fluent in Hebrew.

4. SAEB EREKAT – MINISTER OF NEGOTIATION AFFAIRS (FATEH)

Born in 1955 in East Jerusalem, Palestine, Dr. Erekat is married with four children.

Political Career
Previously Dr. Erekat served as the Minister of Local Government, a position he held since 1994. He was elected to the PLC in 1996, representing Jericho. In 1991, Dr. Erekat was the Vice-Chair of the Madrid Peace Delegation and was later involved in the Washington negotiations. In 1994, Dr. Erekat was appointed the Chairman of the Palestinian negotiation delegation and has since been a senior member of the Palestinian negotiation team. He has been extensively involved in all negotiations with Israel, including those conducted at Camp David (2000) and in Taba (2001).

Career
A former journalist, Dr. Erekat served on the editorial board of Al-Quds newspaper, the Palestinian daily with the highest circulation. He was a lecturer in political science at An-Najah University in Nablus. He also served as the Secretary-General of the Arab Studies Society.

Education
Dr. Erekat holds a Ph.D. in Peace Studies (Bradford University), and a B.A. and M.A. in Political Science (University of San Francisco).
Dr. Erekat is the author of eight books and numerous research papers on foreign policy, oil, and conflict resolution.

5. NABEEL SHA’ATH – MINISTER OF EXTERNAL AFFAIRS (FATEH)

Born in Safad, Palestine in 1938, Dr. Shaath lived in exile and returned to the Gaza Strip in June 1994. He is married with four children.

Political Career
Dr. Shaath previously served as the Minister of Planning and International Cooperation, a position he held since 1994. He was elected to the PLC in 1996 representing Khan Yunis in the Gaza Strip.
A long-time figure in Palestinian politics, Dr. Shaath has been a member of the Fateh Central Committee since 1971 and served as the Director of the PLO Planning Center in Beirut. In 1974, he headed the PLO’s first delegation to the United Nations. In 1991, Dr. Shaath was a member of the Madrid Peace Delegation and later was involved in negotiations with Israel that led to the signing of the Oslo Agreements. From 1993 to 1995, he served as the head of the Palestinian negotiation team, and participated in later negotiations with Israel, including those conducted at Camp David (2000) and Taba (2001). He has also represented Occupied Palestine at the World Economic Forum.

Career
As a public planning and transportation consultant, Dr. Shaath worked extensively throughout the Arab world, establishing both the Engineering and Management Institute and the Center for Administrative Development, which offers management training in 14 offices throughout the Arab world.
Dr. Shaath taught economics at the University of Cairo, the University of Alexandria (Egypt) and the University of Pennsylvania from 1961 to 1970. From 1969 to 1975, he was the Dean of the School of Business Administration at the American University in Beirut.
His interest in education prompted him to found the Dar al-Fata al-Arabi, the only institution in the Arab world dedicated to publishing books for children and young readers.

Education
Dr. Shaath holds a J.D. in Law (University of Pennsylvania), a Ph.D. in Economics and Administrative Science (Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania), an MBA in Finance and Banking (University of Pennsylvania) and a B.A. in Business Administration (University of Alexandria, Egypt).
Dr. Shaath is an avid piano player and enjoys reading poetry.

6. SALAM FAYYAD – MINISTER OF FINANCE (INDEPENDENT)

Born in Dayr al-Ghussun, Palestine in 1952, Dr. Fayyad is married with three children. http://www.mof.gov.ps Political Career
Since October 2002, Dr. Fayyad has served as the Minister of Finance. His commitment to transparency and proper accounting practices led to extensive audits of PA accounts. In 2003, he submitted the first publicly disclosed PA budget that was approved by the PLC (http://www.mof.gov.ps). He is also the Chairman of the Palestine Investment Fund, the Board of Insurance and the Salaries Fund.

Career
In 1987, Dr. Fayyad began his career as an economist working at the World Bank in Washington, D.C. From 1995 to 2001, Dr. Fayyad was the IMF’s representative in Jerusalem, where he worked on financial reform for the PA Ministry of Finance.
Prompted by a sense of civic responsibility to reform the financial system of the PA, Dr. Fayyad resigned from his post as the Head of the Arab Bank in the Occupied West Bank in order to serve as the Minister of Finance in 2002.

Education
Dr. Fayyad holds a Ph.D. in Economics (University of Texas), an MBA in Accounting (University of Texas) and a B.Sc. in Engineering (American University of Beirut).
Dr. Fayyad has authored a number of research papers on the Palestinian economy. He is known for his no-nonsense attitude regarding transparency and fiscal responsibility.

7. ABDUL KARIM ABU SALAH – MINISTER OF JUSTICE (INDEPENDENT)

Born in Khan Yunis, Palestine in 1955, Mr. Abu Salah is married with four children.

Political Career
Mr. Abu Salah takes up the post as Minister of Justice following his work as the Chairman of the Legal Committee and a member of the PLC Budget and Financial Affairs Committees. He is committed to improving the social conditions of Palestinians through the enactment of laws that aim to protect the weakest elements of Palestinian society.

Career
A lawyer by trade, Mr. Abu Salah has been active in the Palestinian Bar Association and the Palestinian Teachers’ Association.

Education
Mr. Abu Salah holds a B.A. in Law (Cairo University) and an M.A. in International Relations (Cairo University).

8. MAHER MASRI – MINISTER OF ECONOMY AND TRADE (FATEH)

Born in 1946 in Nablus, Palestine, Mr. Masri is married with two children.

Political Career
Mr. Masri was elected to the PLC in 1996 representing the city of Nablus. Since 1996, he has served as the Minister of Economy and Trade. A proponent of a free Palestinian market, Mr. Masri was responsible for negotiating the 1994 Paris Economic Protocol with Israel, an agreement designed to build the Palestinian economy on free market principles. He was a member of the Palestinian delegation at the Camp David negotiations (2000).
In his position as Minister of Economy and Trade, Mr. Masri serves as the Chairman of the Board of the Palestinian Investment Promotion Agency; the Palestinian Industrial Estates and Free Zones Area and the Palestinian Banking Corporation. He was a member of the Board of Directors of the Palestinian Investment Fund.

Career
>From 1987 until 1996, Mr. Masri was the General Manager of the Vegetable Oil Company in Nablus. He served on the Board of Directors of several private sector enterprises and was the Chairman of the Board of the Palestinian Development Fund, a non-governmental organization that provides loans for industrial and agricultural projects in Palestine. He was an economist in Beirut and later worked in the private sector in Jordan and Saudi Arabia.

Education
Mr. Masri holds an M.A. and a B.A. in Economics (American University of Beirut).

9. NABIL KASSIS – MINISTER OF PLANNING (INDEPENDENT)

Born in Jerusalem, Palestine in 1945, Dr. Kassis is married with two children.

Political Career
Dr. Kassis previously served as the Minister of Tourism in 2002 and in 1998 was appointed Minister of State (without portfolio) in charge of the Bethlehem 2000 Project.
Dr. Kassis was a member of the Madrid Peace Delegation. He later headed the Technical and Advisory Committee to the Palestinian negotiation team, offering technical support to the Palestinian negotiators. Since 1998, Dr. Kassis has participated in negotiations with Israel.

Career
A trained nuclear physicist, Dr. Kassis taught physics in Germany, Italy, France, England, Lebanon and Jordan before joining Birzeit University in 1980. In 1984, Dr. Kassis was appointed the Vice-President for Academic Affairs at Birzeit University; a position he held until 1989. In 1996, he co-founded the Palestine Economic Research and Policy Institute.

Education
Dr. Kassis holds a Ph.D. in Nuclear Physics (American University in Beirut) and a B.Sc. in Nuclear Physics (University of Mainz, Germany). He is fluent in English, Arabic, German and Armenian. His hobbies include hiking, reading, and studies in philosophy.

10. NABIL AMR – MINISTER OF INFORMATION (FATEH)

Born in Doura, Palestine in 1947, Mr. Amr is married with five children and four grandchildren.

Political Career
For almost four decades, Mr. Amr has been involved in Palestinian politics, serving as a media advisor to PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat. The former Minister for Parliamentary Affairs resigned from his post in 2002. He was elected to the PLC in 1996, representing Doura, Hebron. Previously, he served as the PLO’s Ambassador to Russia. He is a member of the Palestinian negotiation team.

Career
Mr. Amr is the founder and General Manager of al-Hayat al-Jadida, a leading Palestinian newspaper. He is the Director of the PA’s Radio and Television Authority and is a member of the Palestinian Writer’s Union. For ten years, he served as the Director of Voice of Palestine a Palestinian radio station. Mr. Amr has authored three books: Testimonies from the Battlefield, chronicling the war in Beirut, 1000 Days in Moscow, chronicling the fall of the former Soviet Union and The Days of Siege and Love.

Education
Mr. Amr holds a degree in Law (Damascus University) and a diploma in Media and Radio Broadcasting (Damascus University). His interests include reading, power walking and swimming.

11. RAFIQ AL-NATSHEH – MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE (FATEH)

Born in Hebron, Palestine in 1934, Dr. al-Natsheh is married with four children.

Political Career
A member of the Fateh Central Committee since 1980, Dr. al-Natsheh served as the Fateh representative to Saudi Arabia. In 1996, he was elected to the PLC representing the Hebron district. In 1998, he was appointed the Minster of Labor and in 2002 was appointed as the Minister of Agriculture.

Career
>From 1956 to 1970, Dr. al-Natsheh worked in Qatar as the Director of the office of the Qatari Minister of Education.

Education
Dr. al-Natsheh holds a Ph.D. in Political Science (Moscow University) and an M.A. in Political Science (Cairo University). Dr. al-Natsheh has authored several books on Palestinian history including Israel: A Settlement Project, Islamic Jerusalem, Sultan Abdel-Hamid the Second and Palestine, and Islam and Palestine.

12. KAMAL AL-SHIRAFI – MINISTER OF HEALTH (INDEPENDENT)

Born in 1955 in the Jabalya Refugee Camp, Gaza Strip, Dr. al-Shirafi is a refugee from Hiribya, Palestine (now Ziqim and Karmiyya, Israel). He is married with four children.

Political Career
A former physician, Dr. al-Shirafi was elected to the PLC in 1996, representing North Gaza. He is a member of the Political Committee and the Monitoring Human Rights and Public Freedoms Committee of the PLC. Dr. al-Shirafi has been imprisoned by Israel on numerous occasions for political activism.

Career
Dr. al-Shirafi worked as a surgeon for ten years. He is a member of numerous charitable organizations, including the Al-Mizan Center, and is a member of the Board of Trustees of Al-Aqsa University.

Education
Dr. al-Shirafi holds a diploma in Teaching (Ramallah Teachers’ College). Dr. al-Shirafi holds a medical degree and is a certified surgeon (University of Bulgaria).

13. NAIM ABU HOMMOS – MINISTER OF EDUCATION AND HIGHER EDUCATION (FATEH)

Born in Birzeit, Palestine in 1955, Dr. Abu Hommos is a refugee from Lydda, Palestine (now Lod, Israel). Dr. Abu Hommos is married with five children.

Political Career
A long-time Palestinian activist, Dr. Abu Hommos joined the Fateh party at the age of 14, and later became a member of the Palestinian National Council. He has served as the Minister of Education since 2002. In 1994, he was appointed Deputy Minister of Education. Since 1989, Dr. Abu Hommos has served as the Secretary-General of the Palestinian Council for Higher Education.

Career
>From 1982 to 1989, Dr. Abu Hommos served as the head of the Education and Psychology Departments at An-Najah University in Nablus. He later headed the General Exam Committee and the Textbook Development Committee. Dr. Abu Hommos is the author of eight books in the fields of education and politics.

Education
Dr. Abu Hommos holds a Ph.D. in Education (San Francisco State University), an M.A. in Special Education (San Francisco State University) and a B.A. in Education (University of Jordan). He enjoys reading, archaeology and hiking.

14. MITRI ABU AITA - MINISTER OF TOURISM (FATEH)

Born in 1941 in Bethlehem, Mr. Abu Aita is married.

Political Career
Elected in 1996 to the PLC, Mr. Abu Aita served as the Deputy Speaker of the PLC from 1996 to 1998. In 1998, he served as the Minister of Tourism and was later appointed as the Minister of Transportation in June 2002.

Career
An active lawyer, Mr. Abu Aita served as the Chairman of the Jordan Bar Association from 1994 to 1998 and was involved in the hotel and tourist industry for more than 20 years.

Education
Mr. Abu Aita holds a B.A. in Law (Damascus University).

15. GHASSAN KHATIB - MINISTER OF LABOR (PALESTINIAN PEOPLE’S PARTY)

Born in Nablus, Palestine in 1954, Mr. Khatib is married with three children.

Political Career
A member of the Palestinian People's Party poliburo. He was a member of the Madrid Peace Delegation in 1991 and was involved in the Washington negotiations from 1991 to 1993. He was appointed Minister of Labor in 2002.

Career
Mr. Khatib was the Director of the Jerusalem Media and Communications Center, a non-governmental organization that conducts public opinion polls and provides media support to journalists in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.
A long-time advocate of Palestinian-Israeli dialogue, Mr. Khatib is the Co-founder and Director of BitterLemons.org, a Palestinian-Israeli Internet-based political magazine. He is also a member of the Editorial Board of the Israel-Palestine Journal, a political journal offering Palestinian and Israeli perspectives.
Mr. Khatib was the President of the Board of Directors of the Arab Development Center, an agricultural development organization; a member of the Advisory Board of Palestinian Politics. He also served as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Democracy and Worker’s Rights Center and a member of the Board of Trustees of the Friends Schools in Palestine. He was a lecturer at Birzeit University’s Cultural Studies Program.

16. AZZAM SHAWWA – MINISTER OF ENERGY (FATEH)

Born in Kuwait in 1963, Mr. Shawwa is married with three children.

Career
Mr. Shawwa is the Gaza Branch Coordinator of the Arab Bank. Previously, he worked at the Bank of Palestine in the Gaza Strip, where he was the youngest person to ever serve as the Head of the Bank. He is the Treasurer of the Palestine Investment Fund; the Secretary-General of the Palestine Banking Association; a member of the Palestine Food Industries Company and a member of the Palestine National House of Books.
He is extensively involved in community work, serving as the President of the Gaza Sporting Club; President of Atfaluna – Society for Deaf Children in Gaza and a member of the Board of Directors of the Spanish-Palestinian Training Institute.

Education
Mr. Shawwa holds a B.Sc. in Mathematics (University of Memphis).
Mr. Shawwa enjoys swimming and horseback riding and is an avid reader.

17. JAMAL SHOBAKI – MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNANCE (FATEH)

Mr. Shobaki was born in 1952 in Ithna, Palestine. He is a refugee from Bayt Jibrin, Palestine (now Beit Guvrin, Israel). He is married with three children.

Political Career
Mr. Shobaki’s political career began as an activist. A member of Fateh, he was imprisoned by Israel for ten years for his activism during the first Palestinian uprising against occupation. He is a member of the PLO Central Council, and a member of the Fateh Revolutionary Council.
In 1996, he was elected to the PLC representing the Hebron District. He is head of the PLC Economic Committee, a member of the PLC Political Committee and a member of the PLC Political Prisoners Committee.

Education
Mr. Shobaki holds a B.A. in Geography (Beirut Arab Univeristy).

18. ZIAD ABU AMR – MINISTER OF CULTURE (INDEPENDENT)

Born in 1950 in Gaza City, Palestine, Dr. Abu Amr is married with four children.

Political Career
In 1996, Dr. Abu Amr was elected to the PLC as an independent representative of Gaza City. An advocate of reform and democratization in the PA, he currently is the Chairman of the PLC Political Committee.

Career
Dr. Abu Amr is a professor at Birzeit University, where he has been teaching political science since 1985. He is the author of several research papers including Islamic Fundamentalism in the West Bank and Gaza, Civil Society and Democratization in Palestine, The Significance of Jerusalem: A Muslim’s Perspective and Emerging Trends in Palestinian Strategic Thinking and Practice.

He is the President of the Palestinian Council of Foreign Relations; a member of the Higher Education Council; Deputy Secretary-General of MIFTAH, a Palestinian civil rights organization, and was a member of the Executive Committee of the Arab Political Science Organization.

Education
Dr. Abu Amr holds a Ph.D. in Comparative Politics (Georgetown University).

19. HAMDAN ASHOUR – MINISTER OF HOUSING AND PUBLIC WORKS (FATEH)

Born in Gaza City, Palestine in 1940, Mr. Ashour is married with two children.

Political Career
A long-time Fateh activist, Mr. Ashour has been a member of the Fateh party since its creation in 1959. In exile, Mr. Ashour was responsible for organizing Palestinian members of Fateh in Europe from 1960 to 1967. After the start of Israel’s occupation of the West Bank (including East Jerusalem) and the Gaza Strip in 1967, he was responsible for organizing the Fateh members in Lebanon.
Since 1968, he has been a member of the Fateh Revolutionary Council where he currently serves as the Secretary-General.

20. Azzam Al-Ahmad - Telecommunication and Information Technology (Fateh)

Political Career

Former PA Minister of Housing and Public Works (with Housing portfolio added on 9 June 02). Former PLO Ambassador to Iraq. A PLC member, was elected in the Jenin district.

21. SA’EDI AL-KROUNZ – MINISTER OF TRANSPORTATION (FATEH)

Born in Al-Bureij Refugee Camp (Gaza Strip) in 1958, Dr. al-Krounz is a refugee from al-Faluja, Palestine (now Kiryat Gat, Israel). He currently resides in Nusayrat Refugee Camp in the Gaza Strip. He is married with three children.

Political Career
Dr. al-Krounz served as the first Minister of Industry in 1994.

Career Until 1996, Dr. al-Krounz was the Head of the Math and Statistics Department at the Islamic University in Gaza. He previously served as the Dean of the School of Social Science, the Dean of Student Affairs and the Head of the Math and Statistics Department at Al-Azhar University in Gaza. Dr. al-Krounz has written extensively on the subject of statistics.

Education Dr. al-Krounz holds a Ph.D. in Mathematics and Statistics (Purdue University), an M.Sc. in Mathematics (University of Saskatchewan, Canada) and a B.Sc. in Mathematics (Mansura University, Egypt).
Dr. al-Krounz is supporter of economic, health and educational development. He supports open immigration policies for Palestinians in the Diaspora, advocating that Palestinians in the Diaspora be entitled to obtain Palestinian passports.

22. INTISAR AL-WAZIR (UM JIHAD) – MINISTER OF SOCIAL AFFAIRS (FATEH)

Born in 1941 in Gaza City, Ms al-Wazir is a widow with five children.

Political Career
A long-time figure in Palestinian politics, Um Jihad joined the Fateh party in 1959, becoming the party’s first female member. She participated in the first conference for Palestinian women in 1965 and was instrumental in founding the General Union for Palestinian Women, an organization that focuses on the social, economic and legal status of Palestinian women. Her interest in social affairs prompted her to found numerous centers for women, literacy training and rehabilitation including the Social Affairs Committee and the Martyrs’ Families Organization and the Committee for Prisoners and the Injured. Currently, Um Jihad is the director of a number of committees focusing on women, the elderly and care for the disabled.
Um Jihad has been a member of the PNC since 1974 and a member of the Fateh Central Committee since 1987. From 1980 to 1985, Um Jihad was the Secretary-General of the General Union of Palestinian Women. In 1983, she served as the Deputy Secretary-General of the Fateh Revolutionary Council.
Um Jihad lived in exile for thirty years with her husband, Khalil al-Wazir (Abu Jihad), the co-founder of the Fateh party, and leader of the first Palestinian uprising. In 1988, he was assassinated by Israel in his home in Tunisia. Um Jihad returned to the Gaza Strip in 1995 and was elected to the PLC in 1996. Since 1995, she has served as the Minister of Social Affairs.

Education
Um Jihad holds a B.A. in History (Damascus University).

23. HISHAM ABDUL RAZIQ – MINISTER OF PRISONER AFFAIRS (FATEH)

Born in 1953 in Rafah in the Gaza Strip, Mr. Abdalraziq is a refugee from Zarnuqa, Palestine (now Zarnoqa and Rechovot, Israel). He is married with five children.

Political Career
A member of the Fateh party, Mr. Abdalraziq was elected to the PLC in 1996 representing the Jabalya District. He was imprisoned by Israel for 21 years for political activism and was released in 1994. Upon his release, he became a member of the Higher Committee of Fateh in Gaza and was later appointed Minister of Prisoner Affairs in 1998.

Education
Mr. Abdalraziq holds a B.A. in the Israeli Political System (Al-Quds University). While in prison, Mr. Abdalraziq wrote two poetry collections and a novel.

24. ABDUL FATTAH HAMAYEL (FATEH) – MINISTER OF STATE (WITHOUT PORTFOLIO)

Born in Kufr Malik, Palestine in 1950, Mr. Hamayel is married with five children.

Political Career
For 17 years, Mr. Hamayel was imprisoned by Israel for being a member of the Fateh party. (The Fateh party, like all Palestinian political parties, was considered “illegal” by Israel. Political activists were frequently imprisoned.) He was given seven life sentences for attempting to organize Palestinians and was released in 1985 as a part of a prisoner exchange. He was re-imprisoned by Israel in 1990 and was exiled to Jordan in 1992.
Mr. Hamayel returned to Palestine in 1994 where he served as the Secretary-General of the Fateh party in the Ramallah district. In 1996, he was elected to the PLC and served as a member of the Interior Committee and the Budget and Financial Affairs Committee.

Education
Mr. Hamayel attended Military College in Baghdad. Mr. Hamayel has published Lullabies Behind Bars, a collection of Arabic poetry written while in prison. He is an avid gardener and enjoys farming.

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