On Friday, the King of Norway Harald V appointed parliamentarian Hadia Tajik as the minister of culture. Tajik becomes the first Muslim to hold a position in the Norwegian government. At 29, she is also currently the youngest.
“She is one of the bright young members in the Labour Party who has climbed to the top of government,” Tor Wennesland, Norway’s Ambassador to Egypt told Daily News Egypt. “She has proven herself to be a very capable politician as a parliamentarian in the Ministry of Education and as a member of the Young Socialists.”
Tajik’s young political career has been as busy as it has been successful. She has served as political adviser to the current prime minister, ministries of justice and labour and social inclusion.
Norway is home to about 85,000 Muslims and the vice president of the Norwegian parliament is also a Muslim of Pakistani origin, like Tajik.
However, Wennesland said, “her religion has not been a huge part of her political profile. She has chosen more to focus on social affairs, education, and the situation for young people in Norway.” Tajik is instead a defender of human rights more broadly defined, frequently pointing out relationships of power as a way to understand social or political situations.
In her own words, she states on her website that her vision “is that there will only be two limitations in our lives, namely the high goals we set ourselves and how hard we are willing to work to achieve goals. Constraints acting on matters like the size of their parents’ wallet, gender or background, should not apply in our society.”