Seeking Peace Between Israel and Palestine: The Way Forward

Baker Institute fellows representing Israeli and Palestinian perspectives come together for a candid discussion of the Middle East peace process and the work that remains in negotiating a solution.

Samih Al-Abed, Ph.D., Diana Tamari Sabbagh Fellow in Middle Eastern Studies, heads the Palestinian Housing Council, a nonprofit institution that provides development plans, loans and other forms of support to help meet Palestinian housing needs in the West Bank, Gaza and Jerusalem. Previously, as head of the Committee for Borders and Territory, Al-Abed was integrally involved in negotiations between Palestine and Israel. In addition, he was a key participant in negotiations during the Camp David, Bowling, Taba and Annapolis processes in pursuit of peace and stability in the region. Al-Abed also was minister of public works during the Palestinian Authority national unity government in 2007.

Yair Hirschfeld, Ph.D., Isaac and Mildred Brochstein Fellow in Middle East Peace and Security in Honor of Yitzhak Rabin, teaches at the University of Haifa in the Department for Middle Eastern History. He also is the director general of the Tel Aviv-based Economic Cooperation Foundation (ECF). In 1992, Hirschfeld created the Oslo Channel and headed its Israeli team. With bridging concepts and support from the Israeli government and the Palestine Liberation Organization, the unofficial track became official on May 20, 1993. From 1994 to 1995, Hirschfeld was a member of the Israeli team that prepared the first Israeli-Palestinian blueprint for the Permanent Status Agreement, which has become known as the "Beilin-Abu Mazen Understanding."

Speaker Samih Al-Abid
Samih Al-Abid, Ph.D., is the Diana Tamari Sabbagh Fellow in Middle Eastern Studies. Under the auspices of the institute’s Conflict Resolution Program, he participates in the Baker Institute Israeli-Palestinian Working Group, both at the institute and in the Middle East. Al-Abid heads the Palestinian Housing Council, a nonprofit institution that ...


Samih Al-Abid, Ph.D., is the Diana Tamari Sabbagh Fellow in Middle Eastern Studies. Under the auspices of the institute’s Conflict Resolution Program, he participates in the Baker Institute Israeli-Palestinian Working Group, both at the institute and in the Middle East. Al-Abid heads the Palestinian Housing Council, a nonprofit institution that provides development plans, loans and other forms of support to help meet Palestinian housing needs in the West Bank, Gaza and Jerusalem.


He is also a consultant for the CEO and chairman of the Palestinian Investment Fund, an independent firm that aims to strengthen the local economy and generate investor returns through projects that create jobs and other benefits for Palestinian citizens. Previously, as head of the Committee for Borders and Territory, Al-Abid was integrally involved in a final status agreement between Palestine and Israel.


In addition, he was a key participant in negotiations during the Camp David, Taba and Annapolis processes in pursuit of peace and stability in the region. Al-Abid has been involved in the planning and development of the West Bank for more than 30 years.


As the Palestinian Authority unity government’s minister of public works and housing (2007) and deputy minister of planning (1995-2007), he developed planning policies at the regional and national levels, coordinated with various ministries to put a unified strategic development plan for Palestine before the cabinet, and negotiated with donor countries to establish programs for an economically viable Palestine. Al-Abid earned a Ph.D. in regional planning from Liverpool University in the United Kingdom; an M.A. in urban design from North Carolina State University in Raleigh; and a B.Sc. in urban planning and architecture from Al-Azhar University in Cairo.




Samih Al-Abid

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Tue, May 10, 2011
6 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
(GMT-0600) America/Chicago

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