Green Party MP Golriz Ghahraman 'humbled and excited' after special vote win

Green Party MP Golriz Ghahraman 'humbled and excited' after special vote win ... 08/10/2017 People

Keywords:#Cambodia, #Donald_Trump, #Hague, #House_of_Representatives, #Iran, #January, #MP, #Mashhad, #Middle_East, #Muslim, #Nations, #New_Zealand, #Oxford, #Parliament, #President,, #Trump, #US, #United_Nations, #United_States

Golriz Ghahraman (born c. 1981) is a New Zealand politician and Member of Parliament in the House of Representatives for the Green Party.
Last updated 15:22, October 7 2017
Green Party MP Golriz Ghahraman fled to New Zealand from a war-torn Middle East with her parents.
New Green Party MP Golriz Ghahraman has been a right trouper - in a non-militaristic way, of course - shunting furniture around her new home.
The human rights lawyer has just moved into a small flat in the Auckland suburb of Freemans Bay - on a weekend she was elected to Parliament as a list MP after special votes were counted in the 2017 general election.
Fittingly, everything in the apartment is a shade of green: The "kitsch" recycled art, the vases and even the balcony safety rail are all green, complementing the astroturf decking.
The kitchen feature wall and pillars are teal, almost if conjecture about a possible National/Greens coalition government is painted into the walls.
Personal life
Ghahraman was a refugee, originally from Mashhad in Iran, with her family fleeing to New Zealand as political refugees in 1990 when she was nine years old. She is an Oxford law graduate. She worked as a United Nations prosecutor, who worked on tribunals in Rwanda, Cambodia, and at The Hague. She returned to New Zealand in 2012 and worked as a human rights lawyer. She is based in Auckland.
Her father and mother were an agricultural engineer and a child psychologist, though after coming to New Zealand ran a restaurant and gift shop until retirement.
Political career
Ghahraman was selected as a Green party list candidate in January 2017 for the 2017 general election. On the provisional results on election night the Greens did not attain a high enough party vote for Ghahraman to enter parliament, though a slight increase for the Greens in the special vote would see her allocated a seat. After the Greens gained 0.5% of the vote in special votes she was duly elected to parliament, in so doing becoming New Zealand's first refugee MP.
Political positions
Ghahraman has been a critic of United States President Donald Trump's immigration policies. She said she would be too scared to try and enter the US as she was born in Iran, despite holding a New Zealand passport, due to Trump's policies against border entry for people from Muslim nations. Ghahraman stated "Personally, I wouldn't want that for anyone. I'd say 'don't go'."
She believes representation for women and minorities in politics is important "Ultimately the sinister face of populism is what really pushed me over the edge to run as a candidate. The hate speech became scary. I knew that representation is important. I knew that to stop the very real attacks against minorities and women, we had to get really active, to support each other, and forge paths. We have to become leaders ourselves."
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