Here are the main developments since the signing a year ago of agreements to normalize relations between Israel and the two Gulf countries, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, as well as Morocco and Sudan, under the encouragement of the former administration.
On September 15, 2020, the Emirate and Bahrain signed normalization agreements with Israel, making these Gulf monarchies the first Arab countries to recognize a Hebrew state after Egypt in 1979 and Jordan in 1994.
“After decades of division and conflict, we are witnessing the beginning of a new Middle East,” Donald Trump said during a ceremony in the gardens of the White House.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu believes the deal sealed in Washington is “a turning point in history”.
Emirati Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah Ben Zayed Al-Nahyan commended the “change of heart of the Middle East”. Bahrain, Abdel Latif al-Zayani, reaffirms support for a “two-state solution” to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
“Black Day” for Palestinians
Hundreds of Palestinians are protesting in the occupied West Bank and the Gaza Strip, which they see as a “betrayal”.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas reacted, saying, “There will be no peace, security or stability for anyone in the region until the end of the occupation (Israel, editor’s note) and respect for the full rights of the Palestinian people.”
For Palestinian Prime Minister Mohamed Shtayyeh, the signing marks “a dark day” in the history of the Arab world.
The Palestinians, who denounced the “stab in the back”, accused the Emirate and Bahrain of betraying the “Arab Consensus”, whereby a settlement of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict was necessary for the normalization of relations with the Hebrew state.
Netanyahu in Arabia
On 23 November, Israeli sources reported that Netanyahu had secretly traveled to Saudi Arabia the day before to meet, among other things, the powerful Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS).
However, Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal Ben Farhane denied any meeting between MBS and the Israeli leader on Twitter.
Standardization with Morocco
On 10 December, Donald Trump announced Morocco’s commitment to normalizing its relations with Israel and recognition of Moroccan sovereignty by the United States over the Sahara.
King Mohammed VI indicates that Morocco will “resuming official contact (…) and diplomatic relations with the Hebrew state as soon as possible”. He thanks President Trump for his “constructive position” on the Sahara.
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On 22 December, the first flight between Tel Aviv and Rabat brought Israeli officials. Several cooperation agreements have been signed in the fields of water, aviation and finance.
normalization with Sudan
On January 6, 2021, Sudan signed an agreement to normalize relations with Israel as well as receive financial support from the United States, some of Khartoum’s removal from the US list of states accused of financing terrorism. week later.
It still has to be ratified by the legislature before the agreement can take effect.
First Israeli Embassy in the Gulf
On March 11, Emirates announced the creation of a $10 billion (about 8.3 billion euros) investment fund for strategic sectors in Israel.
On June 29, the head of Israel’s diplomacy, Yair Lapid, inaugurates the first Israeli embassy in the Gulf in the emirate, during an unprecedented official visit.
The emirate opened its first embassy in Tel Aviv on 14 July.
Standardization has already enabled several agreements in the fields of tourism, aviation and finance.
Yair Lapid in Morocco
On July 25, hundreds of Israeli tourists arrived in Marrakech aboard the first commercial plane to fly directly from Israel.
On August 11, the heads of Israel and Moroccan diplomacy sign agreements on political cooperation, aviation and culture during the first visit to Morocco by a senior Israeli official.
The next day, Yair Lapid announced that Israel and Morocco had agreed to open mutual embassies in “a few months”.
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