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About Us

Kobi Huberman 
Founder and Leading Partner

a member of the intelligence community and long-time senior high-tech executive. Owner of a business consulting firm.

The Israeli Regional Initiative (IRI) is an unaffiliated impact group composed of members from various backgrounds: ex-military and ex-security figures, business people, diplomats, academics and social entrepreneurs.

We engage with leading figures and decision makers in Israel, in the region and in the international community to promote a regional alliance between Israel and key Arab states, as a new paradigm that will bring stability, security and economic prosperity to the Middle-East region.

Noa Eliasaf Shoham 

General Director

a social entrepreneur with extensive experience in managing third-sector organizations.

     The People  

Our extensive efforts in Track-2 talks have produced substantial and detailed proposals which provide a practical implementation framework for a regional package deal, that includes an agreement on phased progress towards a two-state solution, alongside agreements on regional security mechanisms, economic cooperation, and full normalization and diplomatic relations between Israel and the Arab states.

Noa is co-founder of the Reut Institute, served as deputy general director in its first years (2004-2006), as an advisor to the Reut Group and is today a member of the executive committee there. She founded and managed Shalom Badrachim (Peace on the Roads) - an organization active in the fight against traffic accidents. Noa served as foreign relations manager for the National Transport Institute, and as coordinator of the Coalition for the Advancement of Women in Politics.  Noa lived in Palo Alto for 8 years and was a founder of the organized Israeli community there. She served as a management member of the foundation of the San Francisco Federation, and as joint chair of the local Gvanim program. A graduate of the Wexner Heritage program.



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  December 2016    Israeli Regional Initiative Panel Discussion at the Globes Israel Business Conference  

In a special panel discussion hosted by the Israeli Regional Initiative at the Globes Israel Business Conference, the economic concept behind the regional initiative was presented for the first time to the Israeli business community. The distinguished speakers that took part in the discussion talked about the opportunity for a diplomatic breakthrough and for economic cooperation between Israel and the Arab states as well as about the potential impacts such cooperation would have on the economies in Israel and throughout the Middle East. In the course of the discussion a broad economic study, conducted by Israeli Regional Initiative’s economic staff, was presented. The study demonstrates the positive impact a regional agreement will have on the growth of the economy in Israel and on the state budget.

In addition, we held a panel with senior regional and world economists. On the panel sat: Riad al-Khouri, a senior Jordanian economist and a director at the Ministry of Finance research institute; Wael Shuaib, economic attaché at the Egyptian embassy in Israel; Elias Zananiri, Vice-Chairman of PLO Committee for Interaction with the Israeli Society; Yoram Gabay, a former head of State Revenues Division in the Finance Ministry; and Elena Panaritis former member of the Greek Parliament and a senior economist at the World Bank.

  November 2015    Panel: ‘The Regional Outline for Breaking the Stalemate’ at the Haaretz Conference for Peace  

I cooperation with the Policy and Strategy Institute at the Interdisciplinary Center, the Israeli Regional Initiative was given the opportunity to present the regional approach on all its facets. The session consisted of three panel discussions: the first presented the deep common interests Israel shares with the moderate Arab states. This panel was attended by the Jordanian Ambassador and the Egyptian Ambassador (for whom this was his first public appearance); the second, which emphasized the political feasibility in Israel for advancing a regional agreement, was attended by former government ministers Avi Gabay, Amir Peretz, and Yaakov Perry; the third panel demonstrated the immense economic potential of a regional agreement. Members of this panel included economists such as Aharon Vogel, former Director-General of the Ministry of Finance, and Riad al-Khouri, a senior Jordanian economist and a director at the Middle East research institute.

A short video was also screened during the session, which showed leaders and public opinion leaders from various countries in the region, all talking about the historical opportunity to set the course on a new diplomatic move stemming from a regional concept.

 June 2016  A session at the Interdisciplinary Center’s Herzliya Conference titled: ‘Middle Eastern Regional Agreement’ 

A special Israeli Regional Initiative session was held at the Israel for Peace conference in Tel Aviv, entitled The Regional Outline for Breaking the Stalemate. In front of an auditorium packed with the media, politicians and opinion leaders, we unveiled the regional outline - Israeli Regional Initiative’s political program and the formula for breaking the diplomatic stalemate, which we formed together with the Palestinian Authority.

The panel was facilitated by Channel 10 news anchor Ayala Hasson, with participants Yuval Rabin and Kobi Huberman, a founding member of Israeli Regional Initiative; Elias Zananiri, deputy head of the Committee for Interaction with the Israeli Society; General (Res.) Danny Yatom, former Mossad Chief; General (Res.) Shlomo Yanai, former head of the Planning Division; Prof. Tamar Harman, senior fellow at the Israel Democracy Institute; and Ari Shavit, Haaretz correspondent.

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