Professor Shimon Shetreet, who is running for the presidency of Israel for the year 2021, was born in March 1946 in Erfoud, Morocco. His family moved to Israel in 1949, when he was only 3 years old, along with other Moroccan families who were forced to leave their countries to settle in the Promised Land.
Being fluent in Hebrew, Arabic, English and German, Shetreet studied in a religious school, attended the Yeshiva, and then opted to study law and Arabic literature at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. After graduation, he flew to the United States, where he studied at Chicago Law School.
He worked with the Mossad in the 1960s, and held several positions before being elected as a member of the Knesset on several occasions, initially starting in 1988. He also worked as a minister in successive governments from 1992 to 1996, during the presidency of Yitzhak Rabin and then Shimon Peres. He was Minister of Economy and Planning, then Minister of Science and Technology, and finally Minister of Religious Affairs in 1992.
After the establishment of the new government by Shimon Peres following the death of Yitzhak Rabin, Professor Shetreet retained his position as Minister of Religious Affairs. However, he lost all his positions in 1996, including his place in the Knesset. He was chosen in 1999 as deputy mayor of Jerusalem, a position he held until 2003.
He began his career in the courts where he worked as a court clerk, then became a judge in 1969, and then a member of the Israeli Legal System Committee in 1980. He was involved in the founding of the General Law Association in 1987, and today he holds the position of chairman of the Department of International Law and Legal Research at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
Shimon Shetreet announced, on September 7, that he is running for president in Israel’s presidential elections, to succeed Reuven Rivlin, according to several Israeli media sources.