Abdul Fattah Hamayel
(1950 - )
Born in Kufr Malik in 1950, Mr. Hamayel is married
with five children.
For 17 years, Mr. Hamayel was imprisoned by Israel
for being a member of the Fatah party. (The Fatah 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 the territories in 1994 where
he served as the Secretary-General of the Fatah party in the Ramallah
district. In 1996, he was elected to the Palestinian
Legislative Council and served as a member of the Interior Committee
and the Budget and Financial Affairs Committee. He wa nominated in 2003
as the Minister of State (without portfolio) for the new Palestinian
Authority Cabinet. He is a member of Fatah.
Perhaps because he was imprisoned for over nineteen
years, Mr. Hamayel expects integrity and methodical government functioning
from the Palestinian Authority to help him believe the years wasted
were for a just and successful cause.
He has been quoted as criticizing the Palestinian
Authority for lacking a clear political vision, and is noted as a "reformist
member" of the Palestinian Legislative Council along with Ziad
Abu Amr, in the Middle Eastern presses.
Despite Mr. Hamayel's experience as an Israeli
prisoner, he is considered a reform minded politician and a likely ally
of Prime Minister Abu Mazen.
Mr. Hamayel has published Lullabies Behind Bars,
a collection of Arabic poetry written while in prison. He is an avid
gardener and enjoys farming.
Media Center; MiddleEastReference.org.uk; PalestineReport, Oct.
1997; Pakistan Today, (November 8, 2002); multaqa.org