Perspectives on State-Minority Relations in Israel on the oc...

Perspectives on State-Minority Relations in Israel on the occasion of the 10th Anniversary of the Orr Commission Recommendations

Oct 7, 2013 12:00pm - 2:00pm

Oct 7 2013 12:00pm - 2:00pm - The Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations and The Inter-Agency Task Force on Israeli Arab Issues invite you to a special luncheon session on Perspectives on State-Minority Relations in Israel on the occasion of the 10th Anniversary of the Orr Commission Recommendations with Aiman Saif, General Director Authority for Economic Development of the Arab, Druze and Circassian Sectors in the Prime Minister Office and Ron Gerlitz and Jabir Asaqla, Co-Executive Directors Sikkuy, the Association for Civil Equality in Israel In October 2000, protests in Arab villages escalated into riots and violent clashes with security forces resulting in 14 deaths, 12 of them Arab citizens of Israel. The Government of Israel established a National Commission of Inquiry, led by Supreme Court Justice Theodor Orr, to look into these events. Submitted to the government in September 2003, the Orr Commission Report included recommendations relating to state-minority relations with an emphasis on economic development, allocation of governmental resources, police-community relations and shared society. In the ensuing decade, Israeli government investment in the Arab sector has reached unprecedented levels. There have been promising developments, yet challenges remain in creating a shared society with equal opportunities for all citizens of Israel. Messrs. Saif, Gerlitz and Asaqla will address the impact of the October 2000 events, the implementation of the Orr Commission's recommendations and major trends in state-minority relations today. They also will discuss government investment in developing the Arab sector's economic potential in the context of Israel's future economic growth. Join us on October 7th at 12:15 p.m. for this timely and important discussion. Event Details: Monday, October 7, 2013 at 12:15 p.m. Location details to be provided upon RSVP Space is limited. Please RSVP to [email protected] Speaker Bios Aiman Saif ( Aiman Saif is the General Director of the Authority for the Economic Development of the Minorities Sectors in the Prime Minister's Office, and has served as senior economic consultant at the Prime Minister's Office since 1996. Prior to that, he served as economic consultant at the Ministry of Economy and Planning. Mr. Saif was responsible for several fields including global and regional economy, economy of the Israeli Arab sector, municipal issues, infrastructure and investments. Some of the major initiatives that were coordinated by Mr. Saif were private equity funds; plans for the employment of Arab women; and joint ventures to advance the employment of Arab academics. Mr. Saif issued several publications including The Economic Development of the Non Jewish Sector in Israel (1995) and Middle East Economy - Israeli Master Plan 2020. Mr. Saif earned an MA in International Economic Development at Clark University, and an MBA and BA in Economics at the Otto Friedrich Universitaet Bamberg in West Germany. Ron Gerlitz ( Ron Gerlitz joined Sikkuy as co-executive director in January 2009. He began his professional career in hi-tech, working for six years, both in Israel and in Silicon Valley, California. In parallel Ron also devoted his energy to political activism, both in Israel and in the USA. Before joining Sikkuy, Ron was a project manager at the Israel Venture Network (IVN). He took part in developing strategies and implementing projects advancing local economic development in the periphery, both in the Jewish and Arab sectors. Ron is a graduate of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem with a B.Sc. in mathematics and computer science and an MA in public policy, both magna cum laude. Jabir Asaqla ( Jabir Asaqla became co-executive director of Sikkuy in July 2013. He joins Sikkuy after more than fifteen years as a senior staff member of Shatil, the New Israel Fund agency that advances civil society organizations in Israel, first as the head of Shatil's Palestinian programs and then as Shatil's associate director. Jabir has a rich and varied background with other NGOs including head of the Arab Student Union, founder of Al-Ahali - the Center for Community Development in Nazareth, and in many voluntary capacities as a board member and advisor. He also served in a voluntary capacity as a member of his town's municipal council. Jabir also has long and substantial background as an activist working for Arab-Palestinian rights in Israel and as a leading voice advancing shared Jewish-Arab society in Israel. He is a recognized expert in organizational development and management and is held in high regard in both the Arab and Jewish civil society and political communities in Israel. Jabir received a B.A. in Educational Counseling and Arabic literature from the Hebrew University and an M.A. in education from Haifa University.