Ora Namir

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Ora Namir
Ora Namir at the Commercial and Industrial Club.jpg
Date of birth 1 September 1930
Place of birth Hadera, Mandatory Palestine
Knessets 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13
Faction represented in Knesset
1974–1991 Alignment
1991–1996 Labor Party
Ministerial roles
1992 Minister of the Environment
1992–1996 Minister of Labour & Social Welfare

Ora Namir (Hebrew: אורה נמיר‎‎, born 1 September 1930) is an Israeli former politician and diplomat who served as a member of the Knesset from 1974 until 1996, as well as holding the posts of Minister of the Environment and Minister of Labour and Social Welfare during the 1990s. She later became the country's ambassador to China and Mongolia.


Namir was born in Hadera during the Mandate era. She served as an officer in the IDF during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, before studying classics and English literature at Hunter College in New York City.

She served as secretary of Mapai's parliamentary group and the coalition administration during the second Knesset (1951–55), before becoming secretary to the Israeli delegation at the United Nations. Between 1967 and 1974 she was secretary-general of the Na'amat organisation's Tel Aviv branch.

In 1973 Namir was elected to the Knesset on the Alignment's list, and served as chairwoman of the Prime Minister's Committee for the Examination of the Status of Women in Israel from 1975 until 1978.

Re-elected in 1977, 1981, 1984 and 1988, Namir ran in the Labor Party leadership election in 1992, but came fourth. After retaining her seat in the 1992 elections she was appointed Minister of the Environment in Yitzhak Rabin's government, but was unpopular with staff in the ministry.[1] In December that year she became Minister of Labour and Social Welfare (Rabin had kept the position free in the hope of attracting one of the ultra-orthodox parties to join the coalition),[1] a role she retained when Shimon Peres formed a new government following Rabin's assassination.

On 21 May 1996 she resigned from the Knesset and the cabinet to become ambassador to China and non-resident ambassador to Mongolia, roles she held until 2000. Her Knesset seat was taken by Zvi Nir. After returning to Israel she joined the One Nation party, and was placed fifth on its list for the 2003 elections.[2] However, the party won only three seats.

Namir was married to Mordechai Namir, also a Minister of Labour, 33 years her senior.


  1. ^ a b Tal, A. (2002) Pollution in a Promised Land ISBN 0-520-23428-6 p296
  2. ^ Candidates for the 16th Knesset Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs

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