Hazem Nuseibeh

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Hazem Nuseibeh
Minister of Foreign Affairs
In office
January 1962 – April 1963, 1965
Monarch Hussein of Jordan
Prime Minister Wasfi al-Tal
Minister of the Hashemite Royal Court
In office
1963 – ?
Monarch Hussein of Jordan
Minister of Reconstruction and Development
In office
Monarch Hussein of Jordan
Prime Minister Bahjat Talhouni
Ambassador to Egypt
In office
Ambassador to Turkey
In office
Ambassador to Italy, Switzerland & Austria
In office
Permanent Representative of Jordan to the United Nations
In office
Personal details
Born (1922-05-06) 6 May 1922 (age 95)
Jerusalem, Mandatory Palestine
Citizenship Jordan
Political party Independent
Spouse(s) Qadar Masri Nuseibeh
Children 4
Alma mater American University of Beirut, Princeton University
Religion Sunni Islam

Hazem Zaki Nuseibeh also spelled Nusseibeh and Nusaybah (born 6 May 1922) is a Jordanian politician and diplomat of Palestinian descent. He is a member of the old Nuseibeh family.[1] During his career for the Jordanian administration he served amongst others as Minister of Foreign Relations, Ambassador to Egypt and Permanent Representative to the United Nations. He is also seen as one of the most important ideologists of Arab nationalism.[2]

Early years[edit]

Nuseibeh was born in 1922 in Jerusalem, Mandatory Palestine. For his secondary education he went to Victoria College, Alexandria, Egypt between 1936 and 1940.[3] He started his university studies at the American University of Beirut, completing a BA in Political Science in 1943. Afterwards he returned to Jerusalem to study law between 1943 and 1948.[3] During this time Nuseibeh became a broadcaster and chief news editor of the Palestine Broadcasting Service, where he reported about the Deir Yassin massacre. Nuseibeh was told by the Palestinian Arab leader Husayn al-Khalidi to fabricate stories about atrocities such as rape and a higher death count. In a BBC documentary, made fifty years after the start of the conflict, Nuseibeh said that fabricating the stories was one of their biggest mistakes, as it led to Palestinians fleeing the country.[4] His studies carried him abroad once more when he went to study at Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University in New Jersey, United States. There he earned a Master of Public Affairs in 1952. At the Politics Department of Princeton he earned a further MA in 1953 and his PhD in 1954.[3]

Diplomatic career[edit]


In 1958 Nuseibeh was to be appointed under-Secretary of Foreign Affairs of the Arab Federation, a union of Jordan and Iraq. However, the 14 July Revolution brought down the ruling family in Iraq several days before Nuseibeh's appointment, and the union disbanded.[5] At one point in time thereafter Nuseibeh served as the Jordanian representative in the Jordan–Israel Mixed Armistice Commission.[6] During the 1950s and 1960s the Nuseibeh family became more influential in the Jordanian Government, as Hazem's brother Anwar Nusseibeh was appointed as governor and custodian of the sanctuaries in the West Bank, including the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, and at times was Minister of Defence.[7] Hazem Nuseibeh himself later served as Foreign Affairs Minister between January 1962 and April 1963 and once more in 1965,[1][8] although other sources mention that he served continuously between 1962 and 1966.[3] In February 1965 Jordanian Prime Minister, Wasfi al-Tal, presented a White Paper designed to improve the relationship between Jordanians and Palestinians, which had been troublesome for the last couple of years under King Hussein of Jordan.[9] The White Paper was mainly drafted by Nuseibeh and it called for the establishment of a United Kingdom of Palestine and Jordan.[10] The plan gave the West Bank limited autonomy from the state of Jordan and allowed for the election of Palestinians. With the plan Nusseibeh hoped to make the Palestinians in the state of Jordan feel more included. Prime Minister Wasfi al-Tal voted against the plan as he feared it would creation more friction between the Palestinians and Jordanians.[10] The plan also received criticism from Egyptian president Gamal Abdel Nasser, who wished to take the Palestinians under his pan-Arab umbrella.[9] Later, Nuseibeh came to regret that his White Plan was not implemented, as he felt that the Palestine Liberation Organization could gain prominence because it could call itself the only representative of the Palestinian people.[11] In 1963 Nuseibeh also became Minister of the Hashemite Royal Court and Political Adviser to Hussein of Jordan.[12] This was followed by a term as Minister of Reconstruction and Development between 1967 and 1968.[3]

Ambassador and Permanent Representative[edit]

After these terms as minister, Nuseibeh became an ambassador of Jordan, serving at several high-profile posts. His first assignment was Egypt, where he served from 1968 to 1971.[3] He continued as ambassador in Turkey, being stationed there between 1971 and 1972. He left the Middle East for Europe in 1972 to become ambassador to Italy, Switzerland and Austria, serving until 1974.[3] Nuseibeh changed continents once again when he became the Permanent Representative of Jordan at the United Nations in New York, United States in 1976. During his time as Permanent Representative he on numerous occasions fell out with the Israeli Representative Yehuda Zvi Blum. In December 1980 Nuseibeh partially based a speech on The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, an anti-semitic hoax purporting to describe a Jewish plan for global domination.[13] For the speech he received severe criticism from Blum.[14] Early in 1982 they fell out over the position of Palestinians in Jordan and Israel. Blum wished to point out that Palestinians already had a home in Jordan and referred to the country as "the Palestinian Arab State of Jordan", while Nuseibeh responded by calling Israel "the Israeli entity".[15] During the discussion of the 1982 invasion of the Falkland Islands in the United Nations Security Council, Nuseibeh assurred the Argentinian Representative, Eduardo Roca, that Jordan would vote against the United Kingdom. However, after a conversation between Nuseibeh and United Kingdom Representative, Anthony Parsons, the Jordanian vote would later be in favor of the United Kingdom in United Nations Security Council Resolution 502.[16] Nuseibeh served as President of the United Nations Security Council in October 1982 and he retired as Permanent Representative in 1985.[1]

Political career and retirement[edit]

After his retirement from the diplomatic service he was member of the Senate of Jordan between either 1982 or 1985 and 1989.[3][5] And during 1986 he served as a Government Minister and was seen as a prominent moderate in the discussion about Palestinians.[17] In 1989 he retired altogether from public service. He did however teach Arab and International Affairs at the University of Jordan and the national War College.[3] The in 2009 published book, Jerusalemites: a living memory, were his personal memoirs.[18] Nuseibeh said on his family's website that he currently dedicates his time to farming.[3]

At Nuseibeh's 90th birthday, on 6 May 2012, a banquet was hosted by Prince Hassan bin Talal of Jordan for Nuseibeh's achievements to Jordanian society.[19]

Personal life[edit]

He is married to Qadar Masri Nuseibeh and has four children. His sons are Haitham and Khaled and his daughters are Laila and Lina.[5]

During his youth Nuseibeh managed to win several national and international tournaments in tennis.[3]


Foreign honour[edit]

Works and publications[edit]

  • The ideas of Arab nationalism (1954)
  • Palestine and the United Nations (1972)
  • Jerusalemites : a living memory (2009)

See also[edit]



  1. ^ a b c Mattar, 334
  2. ^ Eliezer Bee̓ri (1970). Army officers in Arab politics and society. Praeger. p. 360. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "Hazem Nuseibeh". Nuseibehfamily.net. Retrieved 11 October 2013. 
  4. ^ Gabriel G. Tabarani (2008). Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: from Balfour Promise to Bush Declaration: The Complications and the Road for a Lasting Peace. AuthorHouse. pp. 78–. ISBN 978-1-4678-7904-0. 
  5. ^ a b c "Family Members – Hazem Zaki Nuseibeh". nusseibeh.org. Retrieved 11 October 2013. 
  6. ^ Enrico Molinaro (1 March 2010). The Holy Places of Jerusalem in Middle East Peace Agreements: The Conflict Between Global and State Identities. Sussex Academic Press. pp. 94–. ISBN 978-1-84519-404-8. 
  7. ^ Simon Sebag Montefiore (27 January 2011). Jerusalem: The Biography. Orion. pp. 633–. ISBN 978-0-297-85864-5. 
  8. ^ "Foreign Relations, 1961-1963, Volume XVII, Near East, 1961-1962". U.S. Department of State, Archive. Retrieved 5 November 2013. 
  9. ^ a b Ashton, 99–100
  10. ^ a b Slaim, 311
  11. ^ Slaim, 312
  12. ^ The Superpowers, Israel and the Future of Jordan, 1960–1963: The Perils of the Pro-Nasser Policy. Sussex Academic Press. 1999. pp. 145–. ISBN 978-1-902210-14-8. 
  13. ^ Abraham P. Bloch (1 January 1987). One a Day: An Anthology of Jewish Historical Anniversaries for Every Day of the Year. KTAV Publishing House, Inc. pp. 183–. ISBN 978-0-88125-108-1. 
  14. ^ Yehuda Zvi Blum (1987). For Zion's Sake. Associated University Presse. pp. 29–. ISBN 978-0-8453-4809-3. 
  15. ^ David L. Bosco (2009). Five to Rule Them All: The UN Security Council and the Making of the Modern World. Oxford University Press. pp. 135–. ISBN 978-0-19-532876-9. 
  16. ^ Richard C. Thornton (1 February 2004). The Reagan Revolution II: Rebuilding the Western Alliance. Trafford Publishing. pp. 71–. ISBN 978-1-4120-1356-7. 
  17. ^ Charles J. Hanley (13 April 1986). "At 17, Veteran Terrorist Says He Is Eager to Die for the Palestinian Cause". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 11 October 2013. 
  18. ^ "Jerusalemites: A living memory". Rimal Books. Retrieved 11 October 2013. 
  19. ^ Kamel S. Abu Jaber (10 May 2012). "Hazem Nusseibeh of Jerusalem". The Jordan Times. Retrieved 8 October 2013. 
  20. ^ "Senarai Penuh Penerima Darjah Kebesaran, Bintang dan Pingat Persekutuan Tahun 1965." (PDF). 


Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
Masahiro Nisibori
President of the United Nations Security Council
October 1982
Succeeded by
Carlos Ozores