A Memorandum of Understanding was signed between The Heritage Center for Middle East and North Africa Jewry in Jerusalem, Israel and The Crossroads of Civilizations Museum in Dubai, UAE on December 6. Eran Taboul, head of the heritage center and Ahmed Obaid Al Mansoori of the museum signed the MOU.
Jerusalem Deputy Mayor Fleur Hassan Nahoum said "I am so proud that Mizrachi/Sefardi Jews are taking the lead in the pursuit of peace and normalization with the Gulf Countries. This evening at an emotional event of Muslims and Jews in Dubai we signed an MOU between the Crossroads of Civilizations Musuem in Dubai and the Heritage Center for MENA Jews that we are planning on building in Jerusalem. Now more than ever the stories of Jews from Arab lands should be told to the entire world from our eternal capital."
Ashley Perry, CEO of the Heritage Center for Middle East and North Africa Jewry, said "The event tonight was an attempt to build bridges between Arabs and Jews through the prism of the Jews of the Middle East and North Africa. In preserving the culture and heritage of the Jews of MENA we can build a bridge from the past to a brighter future for the good of all peoples in the region."
On Sunday 6th December 2020 the event titled "Rebuilding Abraham's Tent: Historic kinship, future alliances" took place at the Crossroads of Civilizations Museum, Al Khaleej Road, Sheikh Hasher Al Maktoum House, Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
It was called an "unprecedented event bringing together Arabs and Jews from the Middle East and North Africa (Mizrahim) to discuss future alliances and the impact of the Abraham Accords at the people-to-people level will be held at the Crossroads of Civilizations Museum in Dubai."
Rav Dr. Elie Abadie, Senior Rabbi of the Jewish Council of the United Arab Emirates attended.
“This event represents a turning point in Arab-Jewish relations,” Ahmed Obaid Al Mansoori said. “We are building on the Abraham Accords. The leaders of both countries have paved the way politically and diplomatically by signing the peace accord, and now it is our role, as people of both nations to translate the peace agreement into tangible outcomes through people to people connection, interactions, promoting peace and tolerance in the region.”
“The Abraham Accords are essentially a family reunion of the children of Abraham to build a common future and destiny for our region,” said Deputy Mayor Hassan-Nahoum. “There is no better way of doing this than by reflecting and celebrating our common heritage and culture.”
The event will be preceded by a photo exhibition of sites in former Jewish communities throughout the Middle East and North Africa, sponsored by The Azrieli Foundation. The images are supplied by Diarna, The Geo-Museum of North African and Middle Eastern Jewish Life.
Read coverage of background of the event.
Ahmed Obaid AlMansoori
Al Mansoori is the founder of the Strategists Center, a research organization focused on geo-political affairs, policy studies and private research of the Middle East from a global perspective. He is also the Managing Director of AlMansoori Consultancy, a strategic management consultancy providing services to government, NGOs and private corporations. In addition, AlMansoori was a member of the Federal National Council, UAE (the UAE’s Parliament). He also established the Space Program in the UAE with primary focus on the development of satellites’ design, manufacturing and operations capabilities. He also established Dubai Consultancy, one of the primary providers of strategic and research consultancy, sector development, security, dynamics of power, international relations and regional affairs to the Government. He also held several posts within the Government of Dubai, and he was one of the primary members who worked on transforming Dubai into the business and tourism destination of today. Almansoori has established the Crossroads of Civilizations Museum, Historic Weapons Museum and the Manuscripts, Old Prints and Books Museum, which aim to promote multi-culturalism, tolerance and positive co-existence through better understanding of the meeting points and crossroads of civilizations. In addition to writing, he is currently a speaker in many geo-strategic and development forums and workshops.
The full text
Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between:
⁃ The Heritage Center for Middle East and North Africa Jewry in Jerusalem, Israel and
⁃ The Crossroads of Civilizations Museum in Dubai, UAE hereinafter referred to as “the Parties”,
- To highlight the positive historic relationship between Jews and Arabs,
- To better understand the culture of the other
- To strengthen and highlight to contribution of both peoples to humanity,
- To help the other institution achieve future alliances by capitalizing on our strengths and understanding to create a better future for both peoples.
Whereas, it is understood that both Jews and Arabs have a common ancestor, Abraham, with both peoples learning from his unique ethical tradition.
Whereas, recognizing that both Jews and Arabs are indigenous peoples in the Middle East whose language, civilization and culture were born and formed in the region.
Whereas, Jews and Arabs have lived side by side for millennia and each have contributed to the culture and tradition of the other.
Whereas, Jerusalem is a city holy to the three main monotheistic religions, Judaism, Islam and Christianity.
Both parties agree to the following:
1. The Abraham Accords offer a unique opportunity for peace, respect and reconciliation between our peoples.
2. That our centers should teach about what unites Jews and Arabs rather than that which divides us.
3. Our centers, and initiatives we are involved in, should become hubs of people to people cooperation and partnerships.
4. Both Jewish and Arab history, culture and traditions should be preserved, understood and shared by all the peoples of the region.
5. We should support preservation efforts of historic and archeological sites of importance to both Jews and Arabs in the Middle East and North Africa.
6. Jews from Arab countries can help engender greater understanding between the two peoples and serve as a bridge to greater cooperation and alliances.
7. We should use our centers to work towards educating the next generation of Jews and Arabs towards tolerance, respect and acceptance.
The Parties will pursue cooperative activities in the following areas of mutual interest:
The cooperation within the framework of this Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) will be carried out in the following forms:
1. The implementation of joint activities and exchange of expertise within the framework of Cultural Understanding and Bridging.
2. Participating in the development of both entities in the area of Tolerance and Positive Coexistence.
3. Expanding the network of each other to serve the goals of the MoU.
4. Collection and exchange of relevant historical and cultural information and data that serves the goals of the MoU.
5. Investing in the staff in areas of Cultural Exchange, Tolerance, Bridging and other areas that serves the sim of this MoU.
6. Carrying out joint conferences, workshops, seminars, meetings and cultural events and exhibitions.
7. Exchange of knowledge, information and experts.
8. The formulation of cultural projects or joint ventures based on the common interest and subject to the consent of both parties.
For the implementation of the cooperation activities within the framework of this MOU, the Parties, subject to procedures established by the legislation of their respective States, shall conclude Implementation Agreements, which will determine the objectives, rules, responsibilities, procedures, implementation strategies and, if necessary, financial support for these programs.
Any disputes arising out from the interpretation or implementation of this MOU will be resolved by negotiations between the Parties or other means agreed by them.
This MOU shall be applied by the Parties from the date of its signing. Any Party can inform in writing at any time the other Party on the intention to terminate or suspend of application of this MOU. Unless the Parties agree otherwise in writing, the termination or suspension of application of this MOU will not affect the implementation of actions which have been coordinated within the framework of implementation of this MOU, however have not been completed to the date of the termination or suspension of its application.
This MOU can be amended by the Parties by their mutual consent in writing.
This MOU shall not be considered as an international treaty and impose any rights and obligations regulated by the international law.
Signed in Dubai, on 6th of December, 2020 in two originals, each in the English language.
The Heritage Center for Middle East and North Africa Jewry
Ahmed Obaid AlMansoori
The Crossroads of Civilizations Museum.
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