Kent to host first discussion between Israel-Palestine speaker in UK

The University of Kent is the first UK university to hold a formal discussion between two prominent Israeli and Palestinian figures.

InQuire can exclusively reveal that the speakers for the event will be Michael Freeman, diplomat of the Israeli Embassy, and Meisoon Elshorafa, Political Counsellor to the Palestinian Mission UK.

The event is in collaboration with UKC's Liberty Union, Jewish Society, and Palestinian Solidarity Society.

The event’s page clarifies how “it is sure to be an engaging, multilateral, and educational event”.

The discussion will be chaired and mediated by Dr Philip Cunliffe, a Senior Lecturer in International Conflict at the School of Politics and International Relations at the University of Kent.

Cunliffe told InQuire that he will be taking an “interactive approach” when probing the two guests. “Given the passions aroused by this question on campuses throughout Anglo-American academia," Cunliffe said, regarding the discussion itself, "it’s a timely and important topic to be openly discussed."

The two guests will begin with a opening statement, which will be followed by 30 minutes of questions from Cunliffe, followed by a Q&A session from the audience.

Security will be at high capacity and ticket-holders have been prohibited from bringing items such as laptops, cameras, bags or water bottles into the venue.

The event is only open to Kent students and staff with a valid university-ID and a second piece of identification, such as a passport or driving licence.

Doors are to open at 6pm and the event will start at 6:30, at the Woolf Lecture Theatre.

Christopher Barnard, UKC Liberty Secretary, has called this event “unique” and are happy to be coordinating this with the Jewish and Palestinian Solidarity Society.

Nour Barham of the Palestinian Solidarity Society has said “this will be a great way to promote peace”.

Jewish Society member, Emma Sampson, pointed out how “opportunities like this do not come very often” and something like this is a “proud moment” for all societies. She also highlights how this is to be an “educational discussion” and not a debate between the two sides.

Stay tuned on and for full coverage on this event.