Gov. Henry Invited to Address Anti-Terrorism Conference in Israel

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Office of Governor Brad Henry
September 3, 2003

State Capitol – Oklahoma City OK 73105

Gov. Henry Invited to Address Anti-Terrorism Conference in Israel

Oklahoma City, OK — Governor Brad Henry has accepted an invitation to address an anti-terrorism conference in Israel this month.

The governor will deliver his remarks at a forum of the International Policy Institute for Counter-Terrorism in Tel Aviv, Israel on September 9. The address is part of an eight-day cultural and business exchange mission sponsored and funded by the Oklahoma Israel Exchange, a non-profit organization that promotes cooperation between Oklahoma and Israel.

“This is a great honor, not just for me, but for the state of Oklahoma. Because of our experience in 1995, Oklahoma has a unique perspective on domestic terrorism. I look forward to sharing that experience with the conferees,” said Gov. Henry.

Former Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres and U.S. Ambassador to Israel Daniel C. Kurtzer will join Gov. Henry as guest speakers at the conference. Two Officials with the National Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism, Brian Houghton and Ken Thompson, will also represent Oklahoma at the forum. A component of the Oklahoma City National Memorial, the institute conducts research projects designed to prevent domestic terrorism and mitigate its effects.

In addition to making remarks at the anti-terrorism conference, Gov. Henry is scheduled to meet with Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon. He will also participate in a tree-planting ceremony on September 11 to honor American and Israeli victims of terrorism, including those killed or injured in the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing and the September 11 terrorist attacks.

During his visit to Israel, Gov. Henry will also take part in agricultural,business and cultural exchange initiatives. The governor will talk to a number of companies and individuals that do business with Oklahoma firms, in addition to meeting with the Israeli secretary of agriculture to discuss information exchanges between farmers in Oklahoma and Israel. Gov. Henry will also visit the Hed Music School in Tel Aviv,which participates in a student exchange program with Oklahoma City University.

The Oklahoma Israel Exchange (OKIE) has sponsored similar missions for previous Oklahoma governors. According to OKIE President Michael Barlow, the exchange efforts have been a great help to people and businesses in Oklahoma.

“When it comes to business, agriculture and education, Israel and Oklahoma really have a lot in common. By sharing knowledge and cooperating over the years, citizens of both states have learned from one another and benefited greatly. Through the OKIE program, we are trying to build on those relationships so that future generations will benefit as well,” said Barlow.