Israeli peace activist Ron Pundak, a trail-blazer of Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations, died today in Tel Aviv after a battle with cancer. He was 59.
Dr. Pundak, together with his friend and academic colleague Yair Hirschfeld, established the now well-known “secret channel” with the Palestinian Liberation Organization, which led to the signing of the Oslo Agreement in September 1993. Recently, he published a book that documents the pre-Oslo efforts, titled "Secret channel: Oslo – the full story."
Following the signing of the Oslo Agreement, Pundak continued to be involved in various “Track Two” dialogue channels with the Palestinians, including the Yossi Beilin – Mahmoud Abbas understandings of the mid-1990s. He was also a member of the Israeli team that reached the 2003 Geneva Accord with the Palestinians.
Most recently, Pundak was the director of the Peace NGO Coalition, an umbrella organization that brings together Israeli and Palestinian peace groups.
Ron was a member of the extended Peace Now family, a friend of Peace Now and Americans for Peace Now. We will sorely miss him and his true dedication to our cause.