The United Arab Emirates has agreed on the signing of an agreement on complete normalization of relations with Israel, a peace agreement if you will, in return for suspension of the application of Israeli law in Judea and Samaria, the occupied territories. The breakthrough was announced by US President Donald Trump on Twitter, and in a press release. "After 49 years, Israel and the United Arab Emirates will fully normalize their diplomatic relations," President Trump said in a statement from the White House in Washington.
According to today's announcement, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and UAE Crown Prince Mohamed Bin Zayed, one of the wealthiest and most influential people in the Arab world, spoke by telephone today. Normalization will include full diplomatic relations and the establishment of embassies, as well as cooperation agreements, including on security, in which there is already a large degree of cooperation, according to foreign reports.
"HUGE breakthrough today! Historic Peace Agreement between our two GREAT friends, Israel and the United Arab Emirates," Trump tweeted, while Bin Zayed tweeted, "During a call with President Trump and Prime Minister Netanyahu, an agreement was reached to stop further Israeli annexation of Palestinian territories. The UAE and Israel also agreed to cooperation and setting a roadmap towards establishing a bilateral relationship." Netanyahu tweeted that it was "a historic day."
Mohamed Bin Zayed sees Israel as an ally against Iran and the Muslim Brotherhood, according to various reports, including along article in "The New York Times" a year ago. According to the report, Israel upgraded F-16 aircraft of the UAE air force, and sold Abu Dhabi advanced mobile telephone spy software.
Trump said in Washington that there would be further agreements with other states in the region.
A senior diplomatic source said that the application of Israeli sovereignty in the territories had not been taken off the agenda, but only postponed, and that Israel and the US were committed to it. He said that the Trump administration had asked that the declaration should be suspended temporarily in order first to cement the historic peace agreement with the UAE.
A senior Likud figure said that people on the left of Israeli politics always said that it was impossible to bring about peace with Arab countries without peace with the Palestinians, that here was no alternative to withdrawal to the 1967 lines, evacuation of settlements, the division of Jerusalem, and the establishment of a Palestinian state. For the first time, he said, Prime Minister Netanyahu had broken the paradigm of "territories for peace" and brought about "peace for peace."
Trump's announcement said that Israeli and UAE delegations would meet shortly to sign a series of agreements, including on the establishment of embassies, and cooperation on security, technology, tourism, health, and even direct flights between Tel Aviv and Dubai. It says that the suspension of Israel's declaration of sovereignty is at the US president's direct request of Netanyahu, and that this will enable progress on the peace plan, which more and more Arab countries would join.
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on August 13, 2020
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