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Yaakov Peri

(1944 - )

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Yaakov Peri is an Israeli politician and serves in Israel’s thirty-third Knesset as its Minister of Science and Technology.

Peri was born on February 20, 1944 in Tel Aviv, which was then part of Mandatory Palestine. He attended the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Tel Aviv University. In 1966, he joined the Shin Bet, Israel’s security agency, and later became the head of its training division. In 1987 Peri became the Director of the entire agency.

In the 1990s, Peri took leave to study at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where he studied and earned an advanced degree in economics and business management. He went into the private sector in Israel, and taught at Harvard. He served as CEO of Cellcom Israel from 1995 to 2003.

In 2005, he was voted the 125th-greatest Israeli of all time by the news website YNet. In 2013, he was featured in The Gatekeepers, a documentary about the Shin Bet that includes interviews with the last six directors of the agency.

Sources: Wikipedia; The Knesset

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