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Rudolph Atallah

Nonresident Senior Fellow Atlantic Council

Rudolph Atallah is a nonresident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council's Africa Center.


Before retiring in 2009 with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel after twenty-one years of service in the US Air Force, Atallah's military career included aviation, special operations, intelligence, and counterterrorism. In his last military posting, he served in the Office of the Secretary of Defense as Africa Counterterrorism Director (2003-2009), while concurrently holding positions as East Africa Director (2003-2007) and Country Director for Morocco and Tunisia (2007-2009). Upon his retirement, Atallah was the only foreign area officer in the Air Force to hold three concurrent regional designations for Africa, the Middle East, and Europe. Atallah is Chief Executive Officer of White Mountain Research, a small Virginia-based business providing tailored international security solutions to clients focused on Africa and the Middle East. </p>

Jordi Bacaria

Professor, Autonomous University of Barcelona

Jordi Bacaria is a professor of applied economics at the Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB). He is also director of the journal Foreign Affairs Latinoamérica published in Mexico. He is a member of Euro-Mediterranean Forum of Economic Science Institutes. He has been dean of the Faculty of Economics at the UAB (1986-1988) and director of the Institute for European Studies (1988-1992, 1994-2000) at the UAB.


From 2000 to 2009, he coordinated the Doctoral Program in International Relations and European Integration of the UAB. From 2000 to 2013, he has been co-director of the Institute for European Integration Studies in Mexico, an institution funded by the European Commission and the Autonomous Technological Institute of Mexico. He is the author of over a hundred publications (articles, book chapters and books) on economic integration, Latin America, Mediterranean economy, monetary institutions, and public choice.

Zeinab Badawi

Chair, Royal African Society and presenter, and presenter, BBC

Zeinab was born in the Sudan - her family moved to London when she was two years old.  Zeinab studied Philosphy, Politics and Economics at Oxford University and took a Master’s Degree (awarded with a distinction) on Middle East History and Anthropology at SOAS London University.  In 2011 Zeinab was awarded an honorary doctorate by SOAS, London University for her services to international broadcasting.  In 2015 she received a second honorary doctorate for journalism from the London College of Communications - University of the Arts London.  She is best known for her work on the BBC’s HardTalk programme, which features some of the best known personalities and politicians in the world. Zeinab also presents Global Questions and World Debates on BBC World TV featured on both BBC radio and television.


Through her own production company she has produced and presented many programmes, including currently the definitive TV series of African history in association with UNESCO.  Zeinab has extensive experience in television and radio, working on a range of programmes. She is one of the most prominent broadcast journalists working in the field today.  In 2009 she was awarded International TV Personality of the Year by the Association of International Broadcasters, and was named in Powerlist 2012 and 2015 as one of Britain’s top 100 most influential members of the black community.  In 2016, Zeinab received the May Chidiac Foundation lifetime achievement award.  She is the current Chair of the Royal African Society, a Queen’s appointment to the Board of the Historic Royal Palaces, a trustee of BBC Media Action (the charitable arm of the BBC), a trustee of the Hampstead Theatre, a Vice-President of the United Nations Association UK, and a board member of the African Union Foundation.  She is also a member of the World Economic Forum's Global Agenda Council for Africa. Zeinab is a former trustee of the National Portrait Gallery.  She has been a board member of the British Council, the Centre for Contemporary British History, a former Chair of the London based freedom of speech campaign organisation, Article 19, and a board member of the Overseas Development Institute.

Abdelhak Bassou

OCP Policy Center Senior Fellow

Abdelhak Bassou occupied several offices within the Directorate General of the Moroccan National Security where he was Borders’ Division Chief from 1978 to 1993. He was the former Director of the Royal Institute of Police in 1998.


He also served as the Chief of Regional Security (Errachidia 1999-2003, Sidi Kacem 2003-2005) and was also Head of the Central General Intelligence from 2006 to 2009. He also contributed to the output of several international organizations endeavors including the Council of Arab Interior Ministers from 1986 to 1992, where he represented the Directorate General of National Security in several meetings. Abdelhak Bassou holds a Master’s Degree in Political Science and International Studies from the Faculty of Law, Economics and Social Sciences of Agdal in Rabat.

Nayé Anna Bathily

Head, Global Parliamentary Engagement, World Bank Group

Nayé Anna Bathily is a Senior International Affairs Expert and the Head of Global Parliamentary Engagement at the World Bank.  She has actively contributed to the creation of the Parliamentary Network on the World Bank and IMF, which is a unique parliamentary platform for policy dialogue on key development issues. 


For the past years, she has engaged hundreds of elected representatives worldwide on international development issues. She also contributes to partnership efforts in Africa on behalf of the World Bank providing strategic input and advice to Heads of States and Governments for major development roundtables. 
In June 2009, she graduated with a Master of Public Administration (MPA) and as a Mason Fellow from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government. 
In 2016, she was selected as part of the Choiseul Africa 100 young economic leaders.
In 2017, she was listed by New African Magazine as part of the 100 most influential people in Africa.

Abdoulaye Bathily

Former Special Representative United Nations Secretary-General for Central Africa

Mr. Bathily held various ministerial positions in the Senegalese Government, notably as Senior Minister in charge of African Affairs (2012-2013), Minister for Energy and Hydraulics (2000-2001) and Minister for the Environment and the Protection of Nature (1993-1998).  Elected to the National Assembly in 1998, he served as Deputy Speaker from 2001 to 2006. Elected to the National Assembly in 1998, he served as Deputy Speaker from 2001 to 2006.


During that period, he was also a Member of the Parliament of the Economic Community of West African States, and a member of the African Union Contact Group on the crisis in Madagascar.  He participated in various conflict-resolution missions to countries in West Africa, including Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea-Bissau, Niger, Guinea and Mali. Having taught history for more than 30 years the Université Cheikh Anta Diop in Senegal, Mr. Bathily has also lectured in several universities around the world.  He has published extensively on African history, politics and the military, and is a member of the Board of the Coalition for Dialogue on Africa (CODA), besides belonging to a wide network of academic and civil-society organizations. Mr. Bathily holds a Doctor of Philosophy in history from the University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom as well as a doctorate from the Université Cheikh Anta Diop.

Zineb Benalla

CEO and Founder, Eirene Associates Int.

Zineb Benalla in an international expert and consutant in CVE, PVE, CT and Peace Building who spent years working in VE hotspots in the Maghreb, Sahel , and the Middle East. Zineb Benalla was a consultant to USAID /OTI and AECOM International Development in Bamako, Gao, and Timbuktu in peace building reconciliation and CVE working with civil society, community engagement and policy makers doing Action research and implementing projects. Prior to that Ms. Benalla worked with the Arab Center for Scientific Research and Human Studies on promoting freedom, peace and civil society values in the Middle East/North Africa, she founded the Averoes Academy for Freedom and Democracy at the Arab Center which is a Public Policy School and which is still empowering today youth around the MENA region. She has also been involved as a CVE advisor to International Organization on Migration (IOM) in Niger.


During six months she conducted research, identified youth at risk and helped implementing CVE activities in Agadez, Diffa and Niamey. She provided her CVE experience to shape approaches and activities development to the NCCI program in Niger , a USAID/OTI project implemented by IOM. She was a Consultant as a field researcher to the British Council in Morocco on building community resilience in the North of Morocco.  She was part of the research team of Mercy Corps which examined lessons from violence prevention programs in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) and apply those lessons to violence prevention in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). She was also Consultant to USAID/Creative Associates Nigeria Program to develop a regional CVE Network ( Niger. Nigeria, Cameron, Chad and Mali). Zineb Benalla is the CEO and Founder of Eirene Associates. Int which is the first an international development and security company in Morocco , she is also the co founder of a Think tank working on transnational violence and CVE and a Co founder of a peace building network ( a civil society network). Zineb Benalla holds a bachelor degree in International Relations from Alakhawayn University in Morocco and Georgetown University in the US, She holds a law Degree in International Law from Kent Law School and Brussels School of International Studies, and a diploma in Terrorism studies from St Andrews University in Scotland. 

Rafael Benke

Vice-Chairman Emeritus, CEBRI

Rafael Tiago Juk Benke is vice chairman Emeritus of the Board of Trustees of the Brazilian Center for International Relation. He is a member of the Council of Foreign Affairs and Trade of the Federation of Industries of the State of São Paulo and of the Council of Foreign Relations of the Federation of Industries of Rio de Janeiro.


 He held several senior positions at Vale, including global head of corporate affairs. He served as legal advisor to Brazil's Foreign Trade Secretary, consultant to the Organization of American States, and international associate at the World Trade Organization. He is also a former member of Royal Dutch Shell's External Review Committee on Sustainability. Rafael is an attorney and holds a master's degree in law of international economic relations, and an LLM in international economic law. He was a visiting scholar at Georgetown University and fellow of the Institute of International Economic Law, in Washington, DC.

Assia Bensalah Alaoui

Ambassador at Large of His Majesty Mohamed VI, Kingdom Morocco

Assia Bensalah Alaoui is ambassador at large of His Majesty Mohamed VI, the King of Morocco. She also serves as co-president of the OCEMO and the vice-president of the Association of Moroccan–Japanese Friendship.


She has worked as professor of international law at the University Mohammed V in Rabat, as co-president of the High Level Advisory Group on the Dialogue between Peoples and Cultures in the Euro–Mediterranean Area, as member of the World Bank’s Council of Advisors for MENA, and as a member of the Board of Trustees of ICARDA. She holds a master’s degree in English studies and a Ph.D. in law from Paris II University.

Newayechristos Biadgillign Gebre-ab

Executive Director, Ethiopian Development Research Institute, former Chief Economic Adviser to the Prime Minister of Ethiopia

Newayechristos Gebre-ab, Former Chief Economic Advisor to the Prime Minister of Ethiopia with the rank of Minister and Executive Director, Ethiopian Development Research Institute (EDRI) Newayechristos Gebre-ab was the Chief Economic Advisor to the Prime Minister, with the rank of Minister and Executive Director of the Ethiopian Development Research Institute (EDRI) until recently. 


Duties of the advisor included contribution to macro-economic policy-making, development strategy formulation, and negotiations with World Bank, IMF and Paris club members on debt relief. He chaired the Government/Donors Committee on governance and represented the Prime Minister in the NEPAD. He was also the chairman of the Board of Directors of the National Bank of Ethiopia. He was the Prime Minister’s Sherpa in meetings of climate issues, and the transitional Committee of UNFCC that studied the design of the Green Climate Fund. He has previously worked as a project coordinator and team leader at different projects of FAO. He has also worked as an Economic Officer of the Technology Division in UNCTAD, Geneva. He has been a freelance consultant for UNDP, UNESCO and FAO among others. Mr. Newayechristos Gebreab has recently received The Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star award from the Japanese government. He holds Post-graduate Diploma, Economics, Manchester University and B.Litt. Economics, Oxford University, UK.