Israel halts plan to annex West Bank after UAE agrees to hold bilateral ties

Egypt, Bahrain among first Arab countries to welcome the deal

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Saudi Gazette report

WASHINGTON — US President Donald Trump on Thursday announced Israel and the United Arab Emirates would move to fully normalize ties, a breakthrough in relations in the Middle East and part of the administration's efforts to shore up support against Iran.

"The historic diplomatic breakthrough will advance peace in the Middle East region and is a testament to the bold diplomacy and vision of the three leaders and the courage of the United Arab Emirates and Israel to chart a new path that will unlock the great potential in the region," read a joint statement between the three countries that Trump tweeted.

Confirming the move, Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan tweeted saying: "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.”

The following is the full text of a joint agreement:

This historic diplomatic breakthrough will advance peace in the Middle East region and is a testament to the bold diplomacy and vision of the three leaders and the courage of the United Arab Emirates and Israel to chart a new path that will unlock the great potential in the region. All three countries face many common challenges and will mutually benefit from today’s historic achievement.

Delegations from Israel and the United Arab Emirates will meet in the coming weeks to sign bilateral agreements regarding investment, tourism, direct flights, security, telecommunications, technology, energy, healthcare, culture, the environment, the establishment of reciprocal embassies, and other areas of mutual benefit. Opening direct ties between two of the Middle East's most dynamic societies and advanced economies will transform the region by spurring economic growth, enhancing technological innovation, and forging closer people-to-people relations.

As a result of this diplomatic breakthrough and at the request of President Trump with the support of the United Arab Emirates, Israel will suspend declaring sovereignty over areas outlined in the President’s Vision for Peace and focus its efforts now on expanding ties with other countries in the Arab and Muslim world. The United States, Israel and the United Arab Emirates are confident that additional diplomatic breakthroughs with other nations are possible, and will work together to achieve this goal.

The United Arab Emirates and Israel will immediately expand and accelerate cooperation regarding the treatment of and the development of a vaccine for the coronavirus. Working together, these efforts will help save Muslim, Jewish, and Christian lives throughout the region. This normalization of relations and peaceful diplomacy will bring together two of America’s most reliable and capable regional partners. Israel and the United Arab Emirates will join with the United States to launch a Strategic Agenda for the Middle East to expand diplomatic, trade, and security cooperation.

Along with the United States, Israel and the United Arab Emirates share a similar outlook regarding the threats and opportunities in the region, as well as a shared commitment to promoting stability through diplomatic engagement, increased economic integration, and closer security coordination. Today’s agreement will lead to better lives for the peoples of the United Arab Emirates, Israel, and the region.



The United States and Israel recall with gratitude the appearance of the United Arab Emirates at the White House reception held on January 28, 2020, at which President Trump presented his Vision for Peace, and express their appreciation for United Arab Emirates’ related supportive statements. The parties will continue their efforts in this regard to achieve a just, comprehensive and enduring resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

As set forth in the Vision for Peace, all Muslims who come in peace may visit and pray at the Al Aqsa Mosque, and Jerusalem’s other holy sites should remain open for peaceful worshippers of all faiths. Prime Minister Netanyahu and Crown Prince Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan express their deep appreciation to President Trump for his dedication to peace in the region and to the pragmatic and unique approach he has taken to achieve it.

UAE-Israeli landmark agreement hailed

Egypt, the Middle East ally of both the UAE and Israel, welcomed the agreement. Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi said the deal will usher in a new era of peace in the region. “I followed with interest and appreciation the joint statement between the United States, United Arab Emirates and Israel to halt the Israeli annexation of Palestinian lands and taking steps to bring peace in the Middle East,” Sisi said in a tweet. “I value the efforts of those in charge of the deal to achieve prosperity and stability for our region.”

Meanwhile, Bahrain expressed its sincere congratulations to the UAE and its wise leadership for announcing with the United States of America and Israel an agreement halting the annexation of the Palestinian territories, as step toward the achievement of peace in the Middle East. The Bahraini Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement, "The Kingdom of Bahrain commends the sincere diplomatic efforts made by the UAE and stresses that this historic step will contribute to the consolidation of stability and peace in the region. It hails, at the same time, the great efforts made by the United States of America to reach this deal, in continuation of US efforts to strengthen the foundations of world security, stability and peace and looks forward to more efforts to reach a just, comprehensive and lasting solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict."

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson also hailed the joint statement by the United States, the United Arab Emirates and the State of Israel, describing it as a "welcome step on the road to a more peaceful Middle East." Johnson tweeted: "The UAE and Israel’s decision to normalize relations is hugely good news." He also praised the agreement reached to stop further Israeli annexation of Palestinian territories. "It was my profound hope that annexation did not go ahead in the West Bank and today’s agreement to suspend those plans is a welcome step on the road to a more peaceful Middle East."

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who played an important role in securing the deal, termed it as an “enormous” step forward on the “right path” Pompeo, who is currently on a trip to central European countries, made his remarks shortly before taking off from Slovenia for Austria’s capital Vienna. Austria has welcomed the announcement of the joint statement by the US, UAE, and Israel. In a statement, the Austrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs described the announcement as "a historic step toward a more peaceful and prosperous Middle East."


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