(Washington, D.C.) - The Middle East Institute (MEI) is pleased to announce that Randa Slim has been named director of the Institute's new Initiative for Track II Dialogues.

The initiative includes the Middle East Dialogue, a Track II forum focusing on emerging political and security trends in the region that meets twice a year, bringing together current and former officials and senior experts from Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Iraq, Iran, Turkey, Jordan, Lebanon, Kuwait, the United States, Russia, China, and the EU. The most recent meeting of the Dialogue took place in Erbil, Iraqi Kurdistan, on March 31.

"This new initiative reinforces MEI's mission to nurture understanding and promote dialogue by creating forums in the Middle East for regional actors to discuss sensitive issues," Slim said. "Our main focus will be on promoting peace-making and peace-building in Syria, and we will also be exploring opportunities to engage in national reconciliation dialogues in Libya, Egypt, and Iraq."

Slim is a long-term practitioner of Track II dialogue and peace-building processes in the Middle East and Central Asia. A former member of the US-Russia Dartmouth Conference regional conflicts task force, she was involved in conflict prevention and management activities in Central Asia, working in Tajikistan and the Ferghana Valley in the 1990s. She was a member of the Inter-Tajik Dialogue moderator team, a US-Russian Track II peace-making initiative launched in the midst of Tajikistan's civil war. Since 2001, Ms. Slim has developed and managed a number of dialogue and peace-building projects in the Middle East. She convened and co-moderated the Arab-American-European Dialogue (2004-2007), and moderated a Track II national reconciliation initiative in Iraq (2006-2009).

She is a non-resident fellow at SAIS Foreign Policy Institute and an adjunct fellow at the New America Foundation. A former vice president of the International Institute for Sustained Dialogue, Slim was also 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.