Leila Al Solh

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Leila Al Solh
ليلى الصلح
Born1946 (age 72–73)
Alma materSaint Joseph University
Spouse(s)Majid Hamadeh
Parent(s)Riad Al Solh

Leila Al Solh (born 1946) is the vice president of Alwaleed bin Talal Humanitarian Foundation and a former Lebanese minister of industry.

Early life and education[edit]

Born in Beirut in 1946, Leila Al Solh is the youngest daughter of the late former Lebanese prime minister Riad Al Solh.[1] She is the aunt of Al Waleed bin Talal.[2][3] She studied at the department of oriental studies of Saint Joseph University, Beirut.[4]


Leila Al Solh served as the minister of industry in then prime minister Omar Karami‘s cabinet from 2004 to 2005,[1][5][6] making her one of the early woman ministers in Lebanon.[7] Al Solh is the vice president of Alwaleed bin Talal Humanitarian Foundation in Lebanon since its establishment in August 2003.[4] Under her management, the foundation realized many activities to support for education, health and social organisations throughout the country.[8]

Political views[edit]

Leila Al Solh published an article in the Lebanese daily An Nahar on 20 March 2001, criticising the Syrian government.[9] She argued that Bashar Assad shares his father's (Hafez Assad's) ambition to control Lebanon.[10] She further claimed that the differences between Bashar and Hafez Assad are that Bashar Assad is much more interested in "the investments of Lebanon's tycoons" than the land of Lebanon itself and that he attempts to eliminate foreign criticism by changing the locus of Syrian control from the "army to the [security] agencies."[10] On the other hand, Solh announced her support for the extension of president Emile Lahoud's term in 2004.[11]


Leila Al Solh published two books on Lebanon as follows:[4]

(2009). Les élections de 2009, les enjeux culturels (The 2009 Elections, Cultural Issues), L’Orient – Le Jour (Special Edition)
(2008). Un Liban à retrouver (A Return to Lebanon), L’Orient – Le Jour (Special Edition)


On 12 March 2008, Leila Al Solh was awarded the Pontifical Medal by Pope Benedict XVI for the efforts of the Alwaleed bin Talal Humanitarian Foundation to encourage religious tolerance.[1][12]

Al Solh has been regarded as one of the most powerful women in the Middle East. She was named as one of the most powerful three women in 2008.[13] She was considered to be the 4th most powerful woman among 100 Arab women in 2011.[14] In 2012, she was nominated by Arabian Business as the 17th most powerful woman among 100 Arab women.[1] She was named as the world's most influential 39th Arab in 2012 by Arabian Business.[8]

Personal life[edit]

Leila Al Solh was married to former Lebanese education minister Majid Hamadeh.[13] She has two daughters and one son. One of her daughters, Haya Majid Hamadeh, graduated from the faculty of medicine at American University of Beirut in 2005.[15]


  1. ^ a b c d "Leila Al Solh". Arabian Business. 2012. Retrieved 15 July 2012.
  2. ^ "The Republic of Lebanon". Worldwide Guide to Women in Leadership. Retrieved 5 October 2012.
  3. ^ Nada Raad; Nafez Kawas (27 October 2004). "Karami unveils final Cabinet lineup". The Daily Star. Beirut. Retrieved 15 March 2013.
  4. ^ a b c "Vice President of Alwaleed bin Talal Humanitarian Foundation". Alwaleed Foundation. Retrieved 12 July 2012.
  5. ^ "Leila Al Solh" (PDF). World Association of girl guides and girl scoutes. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2 April 2015. Retrieved 12 July 2012.
  6. ^ Rola el Husseini (15 October 2012). Pax Syriana: Elite Politics in Postwar Lebanon. Syracuse University Press. p. 250. ISBN 978-0-8156-3304-4. Retrieved 8 March 2013.
  7. ^ David S. Sorenson (12 November 2009). Global Security Watch—Lebanon: A Reference Handbook. ABC-CLIO. p. 88. ISBN 978-0-313-36579-9. Retrieved 7 April 2013.
  8. ^ a b "Leila El Solh". Arabian Business. 2012. Retrieved 25 August 2012.
  9. ^ William Harris (Summer 2005). "Bashar al-Assad's Lebanon Gamble". Middle East Quarterly. XII (3): 33–44. Retrieved 17 March 2013.
  10. ^ a b Gary C. Gambill; Daniel Nassif (April 2001). "Syria's Campaign to Silence Lebanese Muslims". Middle East Intelligence Bulletin. 3 (4). Retrieved 21 October 2012.
  11. ^ "Hezbollah ignored as Lebanon's top three leaders get major government shares". Lebanonwire. 27 October 2004. Archived from the original on 21 March 2013. Retrieved 25 March 2013.
  12. ^ "Pope Benedict XVI Awards Alwaleed bin Talal Humanitarian Foundation in Lebanon & Ms. Leila El Solh, Vice Chairman of the Foundation Pontifical Medal at Vatican". Zawya. 14 March 2008. Retrieved 15 July 2012.
  13. ^ a b "Leila Al Solh Hamadeh". Fanoos Encyclopedia. Retrieved 12 July 2012.
  14. ^ "Leila Al Solh". Arabian Business. 2011. Retrieved 15 July 2012.
  15. ^ "AUB in the news". American University of Beirut. Retrieved 15 July 2012.
Preceded by
Elias Skaff
Minister of Industry
2004 – 2005
Succeeded by
Bassam Yammine