Thursday, September 19, 2013

Upcoming Event: Please Join Us for a Conversation with Maen Rashid Areikat- Chief Representative of the Palestinian Liberation Organization Delegation to the United States

Please Join Us for a Conversation with Maen Rashid Areikat 
Chief Representative of the Palestinian Liberation Organization Delegation to the United States and Keynote Speaker at the Global Studies Conference 
October 3rd-5th

Thursday, October 3rd, 2013
Omaha Room
Milo Bail Student Center
University of Nebraska at Omaha

Free and Open to the Public

Maen Rashid Areikat, who was born in Jericho in the occupied West Bank earned his Bachelor of Science in Finance from Arizona State University and his MBA in management from Western International University. He received his diplomatic training at the Ministry of External Affairs in Ottawa, Canada and completed a training course in good governance at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University in 2001.

Prior to his appointment to Washington, he served for 11 years at the Negotiations Affairs Department (NAD) of the PLO in Ramallah, most recently as its Deputy Head and Coordinator-General (2008-2009). Mr. Areikat first joined NAD in 1998, when it was headed by current Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen), and served as its Director-General until March 2008. In addition to overseeing NAD's day-to-day operations, Mr. Areikat was responsible for overseeing the work of the Negotiations Support Unit (NSU), which provides legal, policy, communication and technical support to Palestinian Negotiating Teams and to the Palestinian Leadership.

Earlier, he spent five years at Orient House, the headquarters of the PLO in Jerusalem and of the Palestinian Negotiating Team to the Madrid peace talks. While at Orient House, he served as spokesperson for the late Mr. Faisal Husseini, former PLO Executive Committee member in charge of Jerusalem Affairs, and later as Desk Officer for the U.S., Canada, Australia and South Africa in Orient House's International Relations Department. Mr. Areikat previously took part in Palestinian-Israeli negotiations at Beit Hanoun in Gaza and Taba in Egypt in 1996, in Jerusalem in 1997 and was an official member of the Palestinian delegation to the Wye River negotiations in 1998.

For more information about this event or the conference, please contact Dr. Rory J. Conces, or call 402.554.2947

Friday, September 6, 2013

NO U.S. Military Intervention in Syria- Talking Points

    First and foremost, several valid reasons based on current facts and multiple international laws, firmly oppose the United States from taking any type of military action in Syria.  In terms of international law, a U.S. military strike on Syria would be illegal based on the UN Charter (Article 51) that only allows military force in situations of immediate self-defense.  Thus, because the United States is not currently under direct attack by Syria at the moment, a U.S. military strike on Syria would be illegal.

     Furthermore, a U.S. military strike on Syria would not at all be aimed at “aiding the Syrian humanitarian cause.”  Already more than 100,000 Syrians have been killed in the civil war, and over two-million Syrian civilians have fled the country and are now refugees.  A U.S. military strike on Syria will not protect Syrian civilians from future threat and would potentially increase the civilian death toll.

     A U.S. military strike on Syria would also have drastic effects in the region, and could mean retaliation from Syria and/or its allies such as Iran or Russia.  It also could exacerbate any of the multiple current wars/conflicts currently being fought in Syria at the moment, including the Syrian civil war, the sectarian (Sunni-Shi’a) war, regional (Saudi-Iran) power war, global U.S.-Russia war, and the U.S./Israel- Iran war over nuclear policy. 

     Instead of taking military action in Syria, the United States must take immediate action in galvanizing world leaders to demand a multilateral cease-fire, support the political process and a rapid convening of a Geneva II peace conference with all involved actors, press for a full blockade of arms, arrange to evacuate Syrian people who choose to flee harm’s way, provide care for the evacuees and assist with re-settlement once the civil war has ended.