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"Israeli Elections & Minority Communities: What the Bedouin Experience Portends for the Future of Israeli Democracy"

Date(s) - 09/17/2019
10:00 am - 11:30 am

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The Middle East Institute


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Please join the Foundation for Middle East Peace and the New Israel Fund for

Israeli Elections & Minority Communities: What the Bedouin Experience Portends for the Future of Israeli Democracy

September 17, 2019 | 10:00am-11:30am
Hanan Alsaneh
Tal Avrech
Negev Coexistence Forum
Harry Reis
New Israel Fund
moderated by 
Lara Friedman
Foundation for Middle East Peace
Coffee and light snacks will be served
Participant Biographies
Hanan Alsaneh is a one of the most active female community leaders of the Negev. Since 2003, Hanan has been working in the Negev’s unrecognized Bedouin villages, as the Director of Education and Community Development at Sidreh Association. Through her projects, over 3,000 Bedouin women have been engaged in literacy, leadership and rights education, becoming empowered individuals and active agents of change. She also led to the establishment of the first women’s community center in an unrecognized village in the Negev, which has become a tremendous success for women empowerment in the region.  In 2005, Hanan became the first representative of Israel to become part of the UN’s CEDAW Committee. She holds a degree in Communications and Middle Eastern studies from Ben Gurion University of the Negev, Hanan Holds also a degree in Law studies from Qeryat ono College and is the founder of the first feminist Arabic Language Newspaper in Israel, distributed to over 50 villages in the Negev.

Tal Avrech joined the Negev Coexistence Forum for Civil Equality (NCF)  in 2018 and is currently responsible for international relations and NCF’s head researcher. She is an International advocacy and research professional with experience addressing conflict resolution and related governance challenges from multiple perspectives (diplomatic, political, community, public administration, and academic). Tal received her M.A in Conflict Transformation and Social Justice from Queen’s University, Belfast, and has a B.A in Government, Diplomacy and Strategy from the Inter Disciplinary Center, Herzliya. In the past, Tal volunteered with indigenous communities in Guatemala; she worked for the Israeli Mission to UNOG; the Knesset (Israeli Parliament). As a student, Tal volunteered with various peace NGOs in Israel/Palestine and worked on various research projects in the Middle East and in Northern Ireland.

Harry Reis is the Director for Policy and Strategy at the New Israel Fund, where he leads NIF policy planning, shaping NIF’s positioning on public policy issues and designing strategies towards achieving those aims. Prior to joining NIF, Harry served as Special Assistant to the CEO of ADL, Jonathan Greenblatt. Harry worked with Ambassador Dennis Ross as Research Associate at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, supporting his research on the history of the U.S.-Israel relationship. Harry’s policy portfolio included Israeli-Palestinian negotiations and the P5+1 negotiations on Iran’s nuclear program. He is a member of the ROI Community of the Schusterman Foundation, and was awarded a Dorot Fellowship in Israel 2017-18. Harry graduated with a B.A. in History from Brown University and currently resides in Brooklyn, NY.

Lara Friedman is the President of the Foundation for Middle East Peace (FMEP). With more than 25 years working in the Middle East foreign policy arena, Lara is a leading authority on U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East, with particular expertise on the Israeli-Arab conflict, Israeli settlements, Jerusalem, and the role of the U.S. Congress. She is published widely in the U.S. and international press and is regularly consulted by members of Congress and their staffs, by Washington-based diplomats, by policy-makers in capitals around the world, and by journalists in the U.S. and abroad. In addition to her work at FMEP, Lara is a non-resident fellow at the U.S./Middle East Project (USMEP). Prior to joining FMEP, Lara was the Director of Policy and Government Relations at Americans for Peace Now, and before that she was a U.S. Foreign Service Officer, serving in Jerusalem, Washington, Tunis and Beirut. She holds a B.A. from the University of Arizona and a Master’s degree from Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service; in addition to English, Lara speaks French, Arabic, Spanish, (weak) Italian, and muddles through in Hebrew.
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