The man credited with engineering Gilad Shalit’s release and the historian who famously won a libel case against David Irving are to join the Chief Rabbi as speakers at this year’s Limmud Conference.

The event’s programming team are promising a “smorgesboard” of international commentators from the worlds of social action, arts, culture, religion, history and politics.

Gershon Baskin and historian Prof. Deborah Lipstadt, known for winning a libel lawsuit against Holocaust denier David Irving are among those named this week as speakers, alongside lesser-known names such as Dina Pinner, who set up Kayama, which works with Israeli single parents.

Others include Yossi Tzuria, who organised the ’49 Shades of Shmita’ initiative, and American stand-up comedian David Tuchman, who spent the last few years recording podcasts about each chapter of the Old Testament for a series called OMGWTFBIBLE.

“We’re extremely excited to be lining up a smorgasbord of different speakers from across the Jewish world,” said Limmud Conference 2014 Co-Chair Jonathan Robinson. “We’ve worked hard to line up the very best educators and speakers, and we cannot wait to unveil the full programme over the coming months.”