Ali Yahya was born in Israel in 1947. He is a graduate of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He is married and has 5 children.
So why would I want to write about him?
Yes, you’re right! Ali Yahya is the first Muslim ambassador of Israel. He started his career in Finland between the years 1995-1999. But before that, In 1995, he was the Representative of the Israeli-Arab Community at the Nobel Prize Ceremony, as part of the Prime Minister’s and the Foreign Minister’s team.
He is best known in Israel for being a messenger of peace and coexistence, not only among Israeli Jews and Arabs, but also between Israel and its Arab neighbors.
Here are some other important things he did in his life:
• He was the Coordinator of the Foreign Ministry’s Special Project Divisions for the Middle East and the Peace Process.
• He was the head of Israel’s Liaison Office in Qatar.
• He served in the delegation of Israel at the UN.
• He traveled to a number of Muslim countries as coordinator for special projects for peace.
• He taught Arabic in the University of Tel-Aviv and in the University of Jerusalem.
• He was the first Israeli–Arab representative to light the ceremonial torch at the Israeli Independence Day celebration for tolerance and coexistence.
• He received several awards including the Knesset Speaker’s Prize, the Histradrut (Israeli Labor Union) Prize for Coexistence, the Israel Prize (the most prestigious prize in Israel) and recognition from the United States Senate for the “Promotion of Peace through Language and Literature.”
Ali Yahya (picture courtesy of www.bnaibrith.org)
As of 2006, he has been appointed as Israel’s ambassador in Greece.
And how did I get to know him? Well, it’s simple: he taught Arabic to my Arabic teacher!
*Facts courtesy of: http://ejpress.org/