As'ad Abdul Qader
Born in Bethlehem in 1943; studied English Literature at Cairo University, graduating with a BA; became a Nasserist, then joined Fateh in 1965; became Sec.-Gen. of the GUPS in Cairo; after 1967, Fateh commander in Jordan, in charge of the Karameh base;
Married King Hussein's ex-wife Dina Abdul-Hamid; relocated in South Lebanon becoming responsible for the PLO youth; rose through the ranks of Fateh to Lt.-Col. and commanded several army units in South Lebanon during Israel's invasion in 1982;
Arrested by Israel in Sidon in 1982 and put in solitary confinement for three months, before being transferred to Ansar Prison Camp in South Lebanon; released at the end of 1983; became Chairman of the Internees' Committee;
Returned to the West Bank after the 1993 signing of the DoP; elected PLC member as an independent in the Bethlehem district in the Jan. 1996 elections; member of the PLO Central Council; appointed spokesman of the PA's 'Emergency Committee for the Defense of Palestinian Lands' and chair of the PLC's Land and Settlement Committee since Aug. 1998; member of the Negotiations Affairs Dept., with special responsibility for the issue of Israeli settlements;
Led the Palestinian delegation to negotiate the fate of Palestinian activists hiding in the Church of Nativity, Bethlehem, during Israel's re-invasion of West Bank towns in spring 2002; strongly supported the no-confidence motion of 11 Sept. 2002 that led to the collective resignation of the PA cabinet;
Appointed Min. of Sports and Youth in the Nov. 2003 cabinet of PM Ahmed Qrei'a (until the cabinet reshuffle in Feb. 2005); appointed as Governor of Bethlehem in 2005.