General Secretary of the Palestinian Democratic Union party
First and Former Minister of the Palestinian National Authority for Women’s Affairs
Zahira Kamal has been at the vanguard of the Palestinian women’s movement since the 1970s. Along with Hanan Ashrawi and Suad Amiry, Kamal was one of only three Palestinian women who took part in the Middle East peace talks in Washington in 1990. She has dedicated her life to Palestinian civil society with a number of organisations including the Federation of Palestinian Women’s Action Committee and, since the establishment of the ministry in 2004, Zahira Kamal has served as Minister of the Palestinian National Authority for Women’s Affairs and established the first gender planning and development directorate at the ministry of planning. She is also the General Secretary of the Palestinian Democratic Union party.
Previously, she was the general director of the Palestinian Women’s Research and Documentation Centre, a UNESCO project.
She is a board member of several organizations, including the Women’s Centre for Legal Aid and Counseling, the Palestinian Businesswomen’s Association (ASALA), the International Women’s Commission for a Just and Sustainable Palestinian-Israeli Peace, and the Women Studies Centre in Jerusalem.
Zahira Kamal was a founding member of the Palestinian Federation of Women’s Action Committee and has been on the boards of several women’s organizations, including Jerusalem Link and the Jerusalem Center for Women. She has written a number of articles and studies on Palestinian women, women’s empowerment, peace and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, women and citizenship, and enhancing the role of women.
During a number of field trips of Trans4m to Palestine in recent years, Zahira Kamal has been instrumental in building up interest for and widespread network around “integral perspectives for the future of Palestine” – seeking to contribute to a peaceful and self-determined future of an independent Palestine.