Sawsan Chebli

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Sawsan Chebli
Matt Lashey, Sawsan Chebli, and Richard Grenell, 4th of July 2019 in Berlin (cropped).jpg
Chebli Pop (2019)
Berlin State Secretary for Civic and International Affairs
Assumed office
6 December 2016
Governing MayorMichael Müller
Preceded byHella Dunger-Löper
Representative of Berlin to the Federation
Assumed office
6 December 2016
Governing MayorMichael Müller
Preceded byHella Dunger-Löper
Personal details
Born (1978-07-26) 26 July 1978 (age 42)
West Berlin
Political partySocial Democratic Party.
Alma materFree University of Berlin

Sawsan Chebli (born July 26, 1978 in West Berlin, Berlin,[1] Germany) is a German politician of Palestinian descent.

Early life and education[edit]

Chebli was born to Palestinian asylum seekers in Germany and grew up with her parents and twelve siblings in Berlin's Moabit district. After completing her Abitur at Lessing-Gymnasium in Wedding, Berlin in 1999, she studied political science at the Otto Suhr Institute (OSI) of the Free University of Berlin.[2][3]

Political career[edit]

Sawsan Chebli and Ambassador Richard Grenell in 2018

Chebli joined the Social Democratic Party in 2001. During her time at university, she worked as student research assistant to Gert Weisskirchen. From 2004, she served as chief of staff to Johannes Jung.

Between 2010 and 2014, Chebli was the first spokesperson for intercultural affairs of the Berlin Senator of the Interior and Sport, Ehrhart Körting, in the state government of the Governing Mayor of Berlin Klaus Wowereit. From January 2014, she served as deputy spokesperson of the Federal Foreign Office under Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier in the government of Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Since December 2016, Chebli has been serving as State Secretary for Federal Affairs in the state government of the Governing Mayor of Berlin Michael Müller. As one of Berlin's representatives in the Bundesrat, she is a member Permanent Advisory Council, which is composed of the sixteen envoys of the federal states.

In August 2020, Chebli announced that she would run for a parliamentary seat in the 2021 national elections.[4][5]

Political positions[edit]

In an interview with German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung in 2016, Chebli addressed the role of Sharia, saying, "it primarily deals with the personal relationship between God and humans. It addresses things like prayer, fasting and alms. That presents no problems for me as a democrat; it is absolutely compatible [with democracy], just as it is for Christians, Jews and anyone else."[6] The statement caused controversy after her appointment to a governing position in Berlin.[7]

Chebli has also denounced anti-Islam right wing German populists, telling Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung: "My father is a pious Muslim, hardly speaks German, can neither read nor write, but he is more integrated than many functionaries of the AfD who question our constitution."[8][9][10][11]

Other activities[edit]


  • Ich träume davon, dass wir Muslime ein anderes Bild des Islams zeigen ("I dream that we Muslims show a different image of Islam") Die Zeit, 29. March 2012[13]
  • Muslimischsein – Deutschsein – Frausein ("Muslimness - Germanness - womanhood"), Nov. 26, 2012[14]
  • Multi-Kulti oder Parallelgesellschaft? "Multi-culti" or "parallel society"? The debate on Muslim integration Diplomatic Magazine 5, 2013[15]


  1. ^ Profile of Sawsan Chebli at the Süddeutsche Zeitung (German), 13 December 2017. Accessed 22 May 2019.
  2. ^ "Sawsan Chebli". Munzinger Archiv. Munzinger-Archiv GmbH, Ravensburg. 2 May 2017. Retrieved 2020-02-09.
  3. ^ Nejezchleba, Martin (22 April 2014). "Der Chebli-Effekt - Warum diese Frau so polarisiert". Berliner Morgenpost. Retrieved 2020-02-09.
  4. ^ Lorenz Maroldt (August 15, 2020), Chebli kandidiert gegen Müller: Nimmt eine Frau sich Macht, legen Männer das als parteischädigend aus Der Tagesspiegel.
  5. ^ Sabine Menkens (August 16, 2020), Sawsan Chebli: „Ich denke, dass ich für dieses dynamische Berlin stehe“ Die Welt.
  6. ^ Altenbockum, Jasper von; Hermann, Rainer (3 August 2016). "Müller und Chebli im Interview: "... als würden Muslime für Aliens gehalten"". Retrieved 21 December 2017 – via
  7. ^ Kraetzer, Ulrich. "Ärger um muslimische Staatssekretärin Sawsan Chebli". Retrieved 21 December 2017.
  8. ^ ""... als würden Muslime für Aliens gehalten"". Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. Retrieved 14 February 2017. Alle reden über Scharia, aber kaum jemand weiß, was Scharia bedeutet. Scharia heißt auf Deutsch: Weg zur Quelle, also der Weg zu Gott. Sie regelt zum größten Teil das Verhältnis zwischen Gott und den Menschen. Es geht um Dinge wie das Gebet, um Fasten, um Almosen. Das stellt mich als Demokratin doch vor kein Problem im Alltag, sondern ist absolut kompatibel, wie es für Christen, Juden und andere auch der Fall ist.
  9. ^ ""Wirbel um Scharia-Aussage Sawsan Cheblis: Berliner Bürgermeister legt sich mit Parteifreunden an"". Huffington-Post Germany. Retrieved 14 February 2017.
  10. ^ "Das seltsame Integrationsverständnis einer Vorzeige-Muslima". Huffington-Post Germany. Retrieved 14 February 2017.
  11. ^ ""Das Bild von der erfolgreichen Migrantin hat Risse"". Die Welt. Retrieved 14 February 2017.
  12. ^ About Us German-Arab Friendship Association (DAFG).
  13. ^ "Sawsan Chebli: "Ich träume davon, dass wir Muslime ein anderes Bild des Islams zeigen" | ZEIT ONLINE". 2012-05-31. Retrieved 2016-12-21.
  14. ^ "Muslimischsein - Deutschsein - Frausein". (in German). 2012-11-26. Archived from the original on 2016-12-10. Retrieved 2016-12-21.
  15. ^ "Multi-Kulti oder Parallelgesellschaft?". Retrieved 2016-12-21.