(1949 - )
Sari Nusseibeh, Minister of Jerusalem Affairs for the Palestinian Authority, was born in 1949 in Jerusalem. His father, Anwar, was a senior officer in the Jordanian army who lost a leg in the 1948 war and eventually became minister of defence in the Jordanian Cabinet.
Nusseibeh received a doctorate in Islamic philosophy from Harvard in 1978 and became a professor of philosophy at Bir Zeit University on the West Bank. He is the Founder and head of the Palestinian Consultancy Group, undertaking research projects on the management of Palestinian infrastructure. He was the first prominent Palestinian to hold talks with a senior Likud politician, Moshe Amirav, in 1987, for which he was criticized by Palestinian activists.
Nusseibeh became a member of the Palestinian steering committee to the 1991 Madrid talks. He has written dozens of articles on Jerusalem and the prospects for agreement with Israel, and is known for his close relations to Israeli leftists, particularly within the Meretz Party.
Since 1995, Nusseibeh has served as president of Al-Quds University in East Jerusalem.
Nusseibeh was appointed the PLO's representative in East Jerusalem in 2001, following the sudden death of Faisal Husseini. Since then, Nusseibeh has been regarded by many as a leading voice of Palestinian moderation, participating in countless meetings with Israeli peace activists. He openly called for an end to the attacks on Israeli civilians, for the renouncement of the Palestinian so-called right of return in order to achieve a peace deal with Israel, for which he was showered with condemnations by Fatah leaders and the PA.
In July 2002, Israeli Public Security Minister Uzi Landau ordered the closing down of the administrative offices of East Jerusalems Al-Quds University, including the Nusseibehs office, claiming that they served as as an arm of the Palestinian Authority, which does not have the right to operate in Jerusalem.