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First Muslim Woman Elected As Speaker In Germany

Muhterem Aras has been voted in as the speaker of German state parliament

Muhterem Aras
Muhterem Aras, Bündnis 90/Die Grünen Baden-Württemberg/CCBY

Green Party politician Muhterem Aras, 50, has been elected as a state speaker after being elected in Baden-Württemberg. She outnumbered the votes of the popular Alternative for Germany (AfD) a far-right, anti-immigration party, who called for a ban on minarets and the burqa.

Muhterem Aras was born in Turkey and immigrated to a town near Stuttgart in Germany. She studied through the German education system and went on to study Economics in University. Muterem later opened her Tax advisory firm prior to beginning her political career and joining the green party in 1992.

State parliament building in Baden-Württemberg
State parliament building in Baden-Württemberg, Reinhard Link/CCBY

She climbed the political ladder starting as a local councillor but has recently been elected at the speaker of the german state parliament, 96 local MPs voted in her favor.

Muhterem's success comes in polarising times as a recent survey found that 60% of Germans believed Islam is not compatible with their country. During Mutherem's speech after her election, all of the members of the AfD refused to applause, putting a spotlight on the growing tension in the country.