Israel’s first international emergency response conference opens today in Tel Aviv.

The World Health Organization is sponsoring the conference in recognition of the international importance of the material to be discussed. The conference is a joint initiative of the Israel Defense Forces Home Front Command and the Ministry of Health.

Over a period of four days, Israeli and international experts will discuss various new developments in the field of preparedness and response to emergency scenarios and share best practices.

During the first two days, presentations will be made about lessons learned from responses to significant past events by emergency agencies ranging from the field to the hospital.

An extensive biological exercise will be held in the Gush Dan region of central Israel over the two concluding days of the conference.

Hundreds of senior officials from Israel and abroad will participate in the conference, including leading guest speakers in the field such as Mr. Arjun Katoch of India – Chief, Field Coordination Support Section of OCHA Emergency Services Branch and responsible for managing the United Nations Disaster Assessment and Coordination team and Dr. Kristi Koenig, USA – An internationally recognized expert in the fields of homeland security, emergency management and emergency medical support.