Cemile Giousouf Cemile Giousouf

  • Germany
  • The first Muslim CDU member of the German Parliament

Biography

Cemile Giousouf  (born May 5, 1978, in Leverkusen, Germany) is a German politician of Turkish ethnicity. She is the first-ever Muslim member of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU), elected to the Bundestag in 2013.

She was born on May 5, 1978, in Leverkusen to ethnic Turkish Gastarbeiter parents, who immigrated to the 1970s from Greece, where they lived as a minority in Western Thrace.

Soon after her birth, she was sent back to her uncle in Greece and at the age of two, Giousouf returned to her family in Germany and she has a brother.

The members of her immigrant family spoke Turkish as well as Greek at home as their native languages denoting their ethnic ancestry and original nationality alongside the German language, being naturalized and second-generation born citizens.

In addition to her German citizenship, she holds also the Greek one.

Education and early career

Following the completion of her high school education in Leverkusen with Abitur, Giousouf studied political science, social science and Islamic science at the University of Bonn.

In 2008, Giousouf was employed as a consultant in the State Ministry of Generations, Family, Women, and Integration of North Rhine-Westphalia under the leadership of State Minister Armin Laschet. At the ministry, she was in charge of the "Women with Immigration History" dossier. From 2009 on, she served as a consultant in the Department of Integration at the Ministry of Integration and Social Welfare of the same state.

Political career

During her university years, Giousouf was active in the German-Turkish Forum, a subordinate organization of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU). In 2008, she was elected vice chairperson of the organization's North Rhine-Westphalia branch, to which she belonged since 2004. She was also active in the CDU's several other local organizations as well as in the city administration of Aachen.

In 2013, the local organization of CDU in Hagen nominated Giousouf for the federal elections. In the next two preliminary inner-party elections, she was able to make her way for the federal election as a direct candidate in the Ennepe-Ruhr-Kreis District in September 2013. She is the first ever Muslim politician of the CDU elected into the Bundestag. Giousouf entered CDU's federal-level organization in 2011, where she was active on integration matters. On June 30, 2012, she was elected to the executive board of CDU state organization in North Rhine-Westphalia.

In parliament, Giousouf is a member of the Committee on Education, Research and Technology Assessment. In this capacity, she is her parliamentary group’s rapporteur on state-funded scholarship schemes and the validation of foreign studies and degrees.

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