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Meet 1st hijab-wearing Israeli's Knesset lawmaker


For the first time in Israel’s history, the hijab-wearing Muslim woman Eman Yassin Al-Khatib has made her way to the Israeli Knesset, after winning a seat for the joint list, which managed to get 15 seats out of 120-member Knesset.

Al-Khatib, a veiled Muslim woman from the Arab minority in Israel is set to become the first member of the Israeli parliament to wear the hijab.

The list gets most of its votes from the Arab minority in Israel, which makes up 21% of the population.

Who is Eman Yassin Al-Khatib? 

Al-Khatib, a mother of four, worked as a director of a social center in the village of Yafa Nazareth in the Galilee, on the outskirts of Nazareth, before entering politics.

She is a member of Ra’am, which is affiliated with the southern branch of the Islamic Movement in Israel and has never had a female representative in the Knesset.

She got a bachelor’s degree at Haifa University in social work and a master’s degree at Tel Aviv University in women’s affairs.

Al-Khatib told BBC Arabic: “It is impossible that the veil does not attract people’s attention, but more importantly, it is the capabilities and qualifications within a person that can contribute to the advancement of society.

In a video published on the Joint List official page on Facebook, al-Khatib said she wants “to raise the voice of women” as well as that of vulnerable and marginalized persons and youth.