Arab Renaissance for Democracy and Development

Arab Renaissance for Democracy and Development

The Question of Palestine

The Question of Palestine 70 Years On: Priorities for Action


Arab Renaissance for Democracy and Development (ARDD) seeks to inaugurate its new Renaissance Centre with a three-year programme dedicated to The Question of Palestine 70 Years On: Priorities for Action. Set to launch in October 2018, the new programme aims to explore issues related to the unresolved Israel-Palestinian conflict through expert meetings, development and dissemination of policy briefs, as well as stakeholder consultations and coordination. Concurrently, as an integral part of the Programme, ARDD will also launch a Global Network of Experts on the Question of Palestine. The overall objective of the Programme and Network is to inject innovative thinking into the discourse around the Question of Palestine and, in the process, to influence key decision-makers and partners.

In light of recent US policy, including the recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, relocation of the American Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, destabilization and defunding of UNRWA and eviction of the PLO Mission from Washington DC, previous policy prescriptions to resolve the Palestine Question have been superseded by the current Israeli Government’s close working relationship with US President Donald Trump’s Administration. This new reality renders the Peace Process born of the Oslo Accords vulnerable, for it is highly dependent on both US funding and Israeli cooperation. A critical redress of the Palestine Question is therefore necessary not only for Palestine, but for the stability of the region as a whole.

In addressing the Palestine Question the Renaissance Center aims to furthermore challenge the underrepresentation of Arab voices within dialogue, expert and lay perspectives often underwritten and sidelined by the much required external input that asserts a greater global and external policy influence. It is the intention of the Renaissance Center to inject a more truly global dialogue, a platform which supports and involves Arab input with the equal value afforded to esteemed external voices on the premise of  al-aswat al-dhatiyya (internal voices).

It is intended that garnering the regional voices of the public, media, humanitarian workers and academic experts alike will strengthen the dialogue on Palestine and deepen advocacy and strategic thinking from the region globally through a series of innovative workshops, on which core themes have been identified based on their specific strategic relevance. The first such workshop, set to take place on October 14th and 15th  2018, will be on the inaugural theme of Palestinian Refugees under Threat: Towards a Strategic Response.

ARDD intends to organize a minimum of six round table discussions, bringing together key international and regional experts, including representatives from the refugee community. Topics for consideration include the “Deal of the Century” presently being spearheaded by the United States, the question of Jerusalem, the status of Palestinian citizens of Israel, and the long-term sustainability of services to Palestinian refugees. Through these initiatives we intend to provide a forum for identification of key propositions as a basis for informing more sound policy, as well as to provide the space for implementing those policy prescriptions by offering networking and informal dialogue opportunities for participants throughout the region. 

Drawing on the expertise of participants at the workshops the program further intends to deliver on the following outcomes: