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Children of Peace

Palestinian Ambassador to the United States Maen Areikat
and Stephen Jakobi OBE

Children of Peace is delighted to announce that Maen Areikat, the Palestinian Ambassador to the United States and Stephen Jakobi OBE founder of Fair Trials Abroad have become Friends of our charity.


Maen Rashid Areikat (pictured left) was born October 12, 1960 in Jericho in occupied Palestine. Prior to his appointment to Washington, he was bestowed the rank of Ambassador by Chairman of the PLO and Palestinian National Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.

Ambassador Areikat served for 11 years at the Negotiations Affairs Department (NAD) of the PLO in Ramallah, most recently as its Deputy Head and Coordinator-General (2008- 2009). Ambassador Areikat first joined NAD in 1998, when it was headed by current Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, and served as Director-General until March 2008.

In addition to overseeing NAD's day-to-day operations, Ambassador Areikat was responsible for overseeing the work of the Negotiations Support Unit (NSU), which provided legal, policy, communication and technical support to Palestinian Negotiating Teams and to the Palestinian Leadership. Prior to his service at NAD, he worked at the Orient House (1993-1998), the headquarters of the PLO in Jerusalem and of the Palestinian Negotiating Team for the Madrid peace talks.

While at the Orient House, he served as spokesperson for the late Mr. Faisal Husseini, the former PLO Executive Committee member in charge of Jerusalem Affairs, and later as Desk Officer for the U.S., Canada, Australia, and South Africa in the Orient House's International Relations Department.

As Chief Representative, Mr Areikat took part in the Palestinian-Israeli negotiations at Beit Hanoun/Erez in Gaza and Taba in Egypt in 1996, in Jerusalem in 1997, and was an official member of the Palestinian delegation at the Wye River negotiations in 1998. In the course of his career, Ambassador Areikat has travelled extensively throughout the region and abroad, including numerous official visits to Washington, D.C., and several European capitals. He has also participated in various conferences and symposiums on the Middle East peace process and the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

Ambassador Areikat lives in Washington, D.C., with his wife, Jumana, and their three sons, Rashid (15 years), Saif (13 years) and Amr (10).

Stephen Jakobi (pictured right) was born in 1935. After a public school and Cambridge education, he worked in industry with a view to joining the family business before becoming a solicitor (lawyer) in 1964.

Having worked as a partner in private practice until 1993, he became a senior partner in his own firm before working full-time at Fair Trials Abroad/International. Stephen's remarkable career includes being President of the London Solicitors Litigation Association, a member of the Civil Litigation Committee , the Council of the Law Society and as a member of the chairmen's panel of the London Legal Aid Area Committee.

He founded the international criminal justice organisation - Fair Trials Abroad/International in 1992.

Stephen has stood for election as a Liberal and later Liberal Democrat candidate at several Elections, including Battersea North (1964) cities of London and Westminster by-election (1965) Windsor and Maidenhead (1966) Cambridgeshire (February and October 1974, 1979) Sevenoaks (1982 and 1987)

He was awarded an OBE for his human rights work in 2005 and retired the following year but remains Senior Patron of Fair Trials Abroad/International.

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