The Middle East Institute is proud to welcome Ambassador Mokhtar Lamani, former head of the Office of the UN-League of Arab States Joint Special Representative for Syria in Damascus, for a discussion about the state of play in Syria, focusing on the dynamics between the regime and the opposition camps. Drawing upon his diplomatic experience and his work on the ground in Damascus, Ambassador Lamani will comment on the prospects for a resolution of the Syria conflict.
Ambassador Mokhtar Lamani has held several positions with the General Secretariat of the League of Arab States (1980-1997 and 2006-2007) and was the Permanent Observer of the Organization of the Islamic Conference to the United Nations (1998-2005). He mediated the prisoner war exchange between Iraq and Kuwait, served as a coordinator for the Arab League Secretariat reform and restructuring in Tunis and Cairo, coordinated the Euro-Arab Dialogue and the Afro-Arab cooperation (1980-1984), and was the Arab League’s special permanent representative for Iraq (2006-2007). In September 2012, he was appointed Head of the Office of the UN-League of Arab States Joint Special Representative for Syria in Damascus.
Randa Slim (Moderator) is director of the Initiative for Track II Dialogues at The Middle East Institute and a non-resident fellow at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies' Foreign Policy Institute. A former vice president of the International Institute for Sustained Dialogue, Slim has been a senior program advisor at the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, a guest scholar at the United States Institute of Peace, and a program officer at the Kettering Foundation. A long-term practitioner of Track II dialogue and peace-building processes in the Middle East and Central Asia, she co-founded in 2007 the Arab Network for the Study of Democracy, a group of academics and civil society activists from eight Arab countries. She is a member of the advisory committee of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund's Peacebuilding program and a member of the board of the Project on Middle East Democracy. The author of several studies, book chapters, and articles on conflict management, post-conflict peacebuilding, and Middle East politics, she is completing a book manuscript about Hezbollah.