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The Daily Northwestern

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Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

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Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert speaks at NU Israel Innovation Project webinar

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Illustration by Samantha Powers
Olmert’s talk is the second webinar the IIP has hosted since Oct. 7.

Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert spoke at a webinar hosted by the Northwestern Israel Innovation Project on Monday.

Titled “Gaza: The Day After,” the talk focused on “ideas, prospects, demands and speculations” about the future of the region. The event was moderated by Hussein Ibish, a senior resident scholar at the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington, D.C.

Olmert served as the mayor of Jerusalem from 1993 to 2003 and as prime minister of Israel from 2006 to 2009. He led the country during the 2006 Lebanon War and participated in the 2007 Annapolis Conference, which revived Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations after a seven-year pause. 

He stepped down from his role in 2009 amid a corruption scandal, becoming the first Israeli head of government to be sentenced to prison after he was convicted on a bribery charge in 2015. 

Elie Rekhess, Crown visiting professor of Israel Studies and the director of the IIP, introduced Olmert. According to the program website, the IIP aims to facilitate technological and scientific partnerships and exchanges between Northwestern and Israeli universities.

This is the second webinar the IIP has hosted since the militant group Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack on Israel, which killed about 1,200 people, according to Israeli officials. Israeli’s ensuing military offensive in the Gaza Strip has killed more than 28,000 Palestinians,  according to Palestinian authorities. 

“We hope to continue this series of webinars on the evolving situation,” Rekhess said. “We also hope to further indulge in education efforts on the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians.” 

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