Ala Talabani is a "former vice president of the Kurdistan Women's Union. She "fled Iraq in 1991 for the United Kingdom after she was fired from engineering and teaching positions for her Kurdish ethnicity and for not being a member of the ruling Baath Party.
Ala Talabani's uncle is Jalal Talabani, "a member of the governing council and the Secretary General of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan's political party. 'We, the women of Iraq, are uniting,' says Talabani. 'We are the most organized sector of the civil society in our country. We won't be ignored anymore.'" 
"A fierce advocate for Kurdish and women’s rights, Ms. Talabani joined the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, one of Iraq’s largest opposition parties, in 1986. Joining Iraq’s women’s movement three years later, she spent five years as vice president of the Kurdistan Women’s Union. She was fired from engineering and teaching positions for being Kurdish and for not being a member of the ruling Ba’ath Party, and she was detained for two days by the Iraqi security service and interrogated about her religious and political beliefs. Following the 1991 Persian Gulf War, Ms. Talabani fled with her family to Iran, back to Iraq, and then to Syria. They eventually arrived in the United Kingdom, where she continued to speak on behalf of Kurdish and other Iraqi women. She has met with President George W. Bush and Prime Minister Tony Blair and contributed to a number of British and Arab newspaper and magazine articles on the state of Iraq and its Kurdish population. Following the fall of Hussein’s regime, Ms. Talabani returned to Iraq, where she was nominated, though not appointed, a member of the Iraqi Governing Council and deputy to the minister of social affairs." 
Related SourceWatch Resources
- Foreign Press Center Briefing: "The U.S. Commitment to Women in Iraq," November 19, 2003; with "Charlotte Ponticelli, Senior Coordinator for International Women's Issues, Department of State; Delegation of Iraqi Women from the Governing Council and the Baghdad City Advisory Council." Audio link to briefing on page.
- Rebecca Ward, "Iraqi Women. Ala Talabani and Raja Habib Khuzai," Voice of America (Global Security), November 19, 2003.
- Profile: Ala Talabani, Inclusive Security: Women Waging Peace (An Initiative of Hunt Alternatives Fund), last updated February 2004.
- Swanee Hunt and Cristina Posa, "Iraq's Excluded Women," Education for Peace in Iraq Center (EPIC), July 1, 2004.
- Maria Cristina Caballero, "Dispatches from Iraq's feminist front. With democratization comes a fierce fight for equality," Harvard Gazette, November 18, 2004.
- "Lunch with Iraqi Democracy Activists. Speaker: Ala Talabani," Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, November 24, 2004.
- Maria Cristina Caballero, "Raising Their Voices. Iraqi women are fighting prejudice to regain the rights lost under Saddam--and to win themselves a say in rebuilding their country," Newsweek, 2005.