Rising food prices along with water scarcity issues have created a problem in the Middle East region that a group of experts is hoping to fix.
The Atlantic Council’s N-7 initiative hosted a conference in the United Arab Emirates this week aimed at fostering cooperation between Israel and the Arab world to produce results that serve a wider community of people.
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“Our goal is to create innovative regional solutions to the shared challenges of climate change, water scarcity and food insecurity,” Oren Eisner, president of the Jeffrey M. Talpins Foundation, said in a statement.
Event organizers said government experts, civil society participants and members of the private sector produced actionable items aimed at positively impacting the lives of citizens across the region.
The gathering of representatives from 10 Muslim-majority countries, Israel and the United States comes on the heels of the Abraham Accords. This series of normalization agreements between Israel, the UAE and Bahrain has since opened doors for economic and security cooperation.
Amid heightened tensions in the Middle East due to developments between Israel and the Palestinians, as well as the development of Iran’s nuclear program, much of the government’s attention has remained on security stability.
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“Moments of tension sometimes cause governments to act with caution,” said former US ambassador to Israel Daniel B. Shapiro, director of the N7 Initiative, explained to Fox News. “What is remarkable about the N7 summit is that despite these tensions, participants from Israel and some ten Arab states were not only willing, but eager to come to Abu Dhabi to meet.”
As a result of the conversation in the UAE, Shapiro said participants expressed interest in employing Israeli water technology on a larger scale throughout the Middle East, which could address food insecurity through collective action.
“Above all, they want to pool their knowledge and expertise, and implement these solutions together as N7 regional partners,” Shapiro said.
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