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Hamas elects first female to political bureau

64-year-old Jamila Al-Shanti was elected to the highest political decision-making body of the Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement on 14 March 2021

Hamas announced the appointment of a Palestinian woman as a member in its political bureau for the first time since its creation.

Jamila Al-Shanti, 64, is the first woman to become a member of its bureau.

Speaking to Anadolu Agency she said that she came to this position not by appointment but by-election, adding that women play an important role in Hamas.

"Women took part in Hamas' political decision-making processes. Consultations were held with women on some military issues. Hamas can't make a decision on an operational, political, or strategic issue unless the Council gathered, where women take part," Al-Shanti said.

"In voting, consultation, and administrative decision-making processes, women affect the decision-making process. There are issues they need to consult with us," she added.

READ: Hamas: 'Israel's detention campaign will not hinder our determination to run for elections'

Hamas began its internal election process on 18 February. It will conclude at the end of March.

The Hamas movement is the main rival group to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah party. It won the last Palestinian parliamentary elections in 2006.

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