Recent developments especially in Yemen and the conflicts in Syria, Iraq and Libya have captured the interest of the Arab and international media, in turn decreasing the focus on the Palestinian issue. In order to bring it back to its central position, the 9th Al Jazeera Forum will devote a sub-session in its ninth session to the topic of “The Palestinian Cause and the Prospects for Peace,” alongside “Will Syria Follow the Bosnian Scenario?” and "The UN Plan for the Safety and Security of Journalists: Opportunities and Challenges." Speakers include will include Osama Hamdan, Head of the International Relations Department of Hamas; Abdullah Abdullah, Chair of the Political Committee of the Palestinian National Council; Salma Karmi-Ayyoub, Director of Al-Haq (London); Mohsen Saleh, Director of Al Zaitouna Centre for Studies; Susana Khalil, Founder of CANAAN Association.
The discussion of this topic is of special importance in the current climate after the results of the Israeli elections, which consecrated a further rise of the extreme right amidst the rejection of the Palestinian state project by the Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, and the potential implications of this stance on US-Israeli relations. The Obama administration has stressed that its stance on Israel will be affected by the extent of the realisation of the two-state solution.
The 9th Al Jazeera Forum will be held on the 4th, 5th and 6th of May 2015 in Doha under the title “Conflict and Change in the Arab World,” with the participation of a select group of decision-makers, academics, politicians, writers and journalists from several countries and different continents. The forum is a platform that is open to all trends of thought and its sessions are broadcast live. It also provides an opportunity for young people to ask questions and get answers to on the forum’s website. The forum has been organised and coordinated since last year by Al Jazeera Centre for Studies. The centre has formed a partnership with various parts of the network to diversify the themes of the forum and expand the range of participants linked to the Arab media.
The eighth forum, which was held in May 2014, focused on the theme of “Internal Obstacles for Democratic Transformation in the Arab World,” in which a number of writers and intellectuals from several Arab and Islamic countries participated, put forward new ideas that sparked extensive debate among the participants, and touched on the impact of the Arab Spring on the freedom of media and human rights in the Arab world.