Jerusalem scholar to speak on Israeli-Palestinian conflict

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KALAMAZOO—A man who has been called "the Desmond Tutu of Palestine" will visit the Western Michigan University campus this week to present solutions to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

The Rev. Naim Ateek, a Palestinian Christian and founder and head of the Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology Center in Jerusalem, will speak at 4 p.m. Saturday, March 16, in 1060 Fetzer Center. His presentation, free and open to the public, is titled "Requirements for a Just Peace in Palestine-Israel" and is sponsored by the Institute of Government and Politics and the WMU Department of Political Science.

Rev. Naim Ateek

Ateek is ordained in the Anglican Church, holds degrees from Hardin-Simmons University and the Church Divinity School of the Pacific and earned a doctor of divinity from the San Francisco Theological Seminary. He received the Episcopal Peace Fellowship Sayre Award and Distinguished Alumnus awards from his alma maters.

Ateek established the Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology Center in Jerusalem in 1991 after serving as canon of St. George's Cathedral in Jerusalem and as a parish priest in Haifa and Nazareth. He is the author and editor of numerous books, including "Justice and Only Justice: A Palestinian Theology of Liberation," "Faith and the Intifada" and "Our Story: The Palestinians." He lectures widely internationally.

Ateek will address how peace with justice will benefit Palestinians and Israelis, as well as the U.S. and the rest of the world. He also will discuss conditions of life for Palestinians under the occupation, Israeli attitudes, Palestinian efforts in the nonviolent tradition, strategies to resolve the conflict and comparisons with the U.S. civil rights and South African anti-apartheid movements.

For more information, contact Dr. Peter Wielhouwer, associate professor of political science and director of the Institute of Government and Politics, at (269) 387-5685.