UofSC to host former Tunisian president for forum on the future of Middle East

The University of South Carolina will host the former president of Tunisia on Tuesday (March 21) for a public panel discussion on the Arab Spring, Jasmine Revolution and the future of the Middle East.

Dr. Moncef Marzouki, who served as president of Tunisia from 2011–2014, will join some of the university’s top faculty in the area of international relations. The event, which is free and open to the public, will take place at 5:30 p.m. in the university’s Capstone House. It is titled “The Hodges Forum on International Affairs: ‘The Jasmine Revolution and the Future of the Middle East.’” 

In addition to Marzouki, the panel will feature Hamid Khan, deputy director of the Rule of Law Collaborative; Gerald McDermott, a professor of international business; Josef Olmert, an international studies lecturer and former adviser to Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir; and Robert Cox, director of the Walker Institute for International and Area Studies.

The event comes at a pivotal time as a new U.S. administration shapes its international policies and approaches to the Middle East.

Marzouki was elected president of Tunisia by the Constituent Assembly, a body elected to govern the country and draft a new constitution following Tunisia's revolution in 2011. Also known as the "Jasmine Revolution," Tunisia's successful uprising sparked the Arab Spring.

The public will have a second opportunity to hear Marzouki at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday at the School of Law auditorium. Marzouki will join faculty in a panel discussion titled "Modern Constitution-Making."  It will focus on Tunisia’s efforts to engage in the region’s first constitution-making process outside of the influence of either a dictator or colonial power. The panel also will feature Hamid Khan and Joel Samuels with the Rule of Law Collaborative and law faculty members Aparna Polavarapu and Wadie Said.

While at the university, Marzouki also will meet with faculty and students in law, international studies and international business and speak at a World Affairs Council luncheon. His visit is co-sponsored by the university’s Darla Moore School of Business, the Rule of Law Collaborative and the College of Arts and Sciences’ Walker Institute for International and Area Studies.

For more information, contact McDermott at 803-777-10356 or gerald.mcdermott@moore.sc.edu.

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