Ghadir Shafie is a Palestinian feminist who dedicates her work and activism to the cause of Palestinian queer women and to promoting a greater understanding of—and commitment to—the issue of Palestine amongst fellow political activists and stakeholders. Having long been active on political issues, in 2008 she joined Aswat: Palestinian Gay Women as a resource development and networking coordinator, and now serves as Aswat’s co-director.
Ghadir passionately believes in the intersectionality of the struggle of Palestinian queer women. Fighting a triple oppression—as Palestinians, as women and as LGBTQI people—Palestinian queer women are at the heart of the feminist, queer and anti-colonial national liberation causes. Through her work and activism, Ghadir endeavours to make this intersection visible and to unite the feminist, queer and Palestine liberation movements in a monumental struggle for justice and freedom.
Aswat works within Palestinian communities to advance the rights of women and LGBTQI persons and create open and safe spaces for the discussion of sexuality and social change in Palestinian society. Aswat also engages with activists and members of civil society to enhance their understanding of the struggle of women and queer people as integral to the national liberation movement. Ghadir has spoken in numerous international platforms and founded several coalitions to promote the rights and freedoms not only of Palestinian queer women but of all Palestinians. Palestinian queer women can never be free under occupation, colonialism and apartheid, and therefore the struggle for sexual rights and freedoms can never be separated from the national struggle for justice and self-determination.