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> Shahdi Al-Kashif, journalist
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> Aliyyeh Nuseibeh: school principal
> Abdel-Hamid Hamam: A composer and a scholar
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> Badrans: A Century of Tradition and Innovation
> Dr. Naseeb Shaheen, historian
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> Fr. Gaudentius Orfali of Nazareth
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> Fayeq [Mike} Nasser
> Abdul Jawad Saleh, politician
> Laith Bazari, DJ
> Augustine Lama, composer
> Talal Nasereddin, CEO
Born in Al-Bireh on December 3, 1931, Abdul Jawad Saleh grew up in a farming family where he learned at a very young age the meaning of hard work. This lesson has served him throughout his productive life. He is married and the father of six children - one of whom, Maher, was martyred in Tal a-Za’atar Refugee Camp in Lebanon in 1974.
His degree in political economics from the American University in Cairo, in 1955, led him into the teaching profession in Jerusalem. Later he became an activist within the Palestinian national movement. In February 1967, he was elected mayor of Al-Bireh. In spite of the oppression of occupation, his efforts to promote development were very successful. The projects that were completed during his term as mayor include the construction of a number of schools, the building of the area’s first commercial shopping centre, and the development of an industrial zone.
Abdul Jawad Saleh invested time and energy as well in mobilizing the voluntary work movement, which included women’s societies, cultural centres, and youth organizations. In 1969, the voluntary work movement were able to prevent the construction of a settlement on the soil of Beit Duqqu Village.
An integral component of his strategy to resist occupation and “transfer” - the Zionist solution to the Palestinian problem - is the creation of strong national institutions, a stable economic base, and well-developed civil and democratic institutions.
In the days before international support was available to found local human rights’ organizations, Abdul Jawad Saleh made human rights a priority. He visited Palestinian war prisoners and campaigned against their torture.
Abdul Jawad Saleh was forced into exile by the occupation forces on December 10, 1973, which happened to be International Human Rights Day. In 1974, he was elected to the Executive Committee of the PLO. In 1981, however, when his campaign against political and financial corruption in the PLO reached its zenith, his membership in the executive committee was terminated. Since that time, he has been a member of the Palestinian National Council and the Central Council.
In 1981 he established the Jerusalem Center for Development Studies in Amman, an independent, non-profit organization whose goals were to promote studies and research that focused on the occupied Palestinian territories and its problems.
In 1993, after twenty years of exile, Abdul Jawed Saleh was permitted to return home. His father had died while he was in exile, and his mother, being elderly and infirm, did not even recognize him. Although he left his martyred son, Maher, in Beirut, his return became a rebirth for his soul.
After winning a seat in the PLC, he and a group of other members formed the Democratic Alliance Block, within the PLC.
Between 1996 and 1998, during his tenure as minister of agriculture, Abdul Jawad Saleh was able to enlist the financial support of many donor countries and the UNDP in order to implement various projects, including land reclamation, improvement of animal husbandry, and the establishment of an agricultural research centre.
After resigning in 1998, Abdul Jawad Saleh returned to the PLC until the 2006 elections.
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