Bahrain's FM meets Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah ahead of Arab League Summit

Dr Abdullatif bin Rashid Al Zayani reiterated the kingdom's support for full Palestinian membership of the UN and two-state solution

President Mahmoud Abbas received Bahrain's Foreign Minister, Abdullatif bin Rashid Al Zayani, at the Presidential Compound in Ramallah. Dr Al Zayani was representing King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa. Photo: Wafa
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Bahrain supports full Palestinian membership of the UN and remains committed to a ceasefire in Gaza and a two-state solution, the kingdom's foreign minister told Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in a visit to Ramallah on Friday.

Mr Abbas and Bahrain's Dr Abdullatif bin Rashid Al Zayani also discussed the importance of preventing an Israeli attack on Rafah in Gaza, and their shared commitment to regional de-escalation.

Dr Al Zayani also met the Secretary General of the Palestinian Liberation Organisation, Hussein Al Sheikh, the Bahraini Ambassador to Jordan, Sheikh Khalifa bin Abdullah Al Khalifa, and other officials from the Palestinian Authority.

The Palestinian president thanked Bahrain for its solidarity during the war and its support of Palestinian statehood and full membership at the UN. The US on Thursday vetoed the Palestinian Authority's bid for full membership in a session of the UN Security Council.

Mr Abbas praised those countries “that stood in favor of the values of justice and righteousness by voting in favor of Palestine obtaining full membership, despite the unfair and condemned US veto,” the Palestinian news agency Wafa reported.

On behalf of King Hamad, Dr Al Zayani invited Mr Abbas to attend the 33rd Arab League Summit, which is being held in Bahrain on May 16.

The war in Gaza and the related regional crisis are expected to be top of the agenda at the summit.

Along with its Arab allies, Bahrain has repeatedly called for a ceasefire in Gaza, where more than 34,000 Palestinians have been killed in six months of war.

Bahrain also has diplomatic relations with Israel since signing the Abraham Accords in 2020.

Bahrain's King Hamad visited Egypt and Jordan this week, where he discussed Gaza and regional developments with President Abdel Fattah El Sisi and Jordan's King Abdullah respectively.

In a joint statement from Cairo, King Hamad and President El Sisi urged de-escalation both in Gaza and across the region, which has been on high alert after Iran attacked Israel this week in retaliation for an Israeli attack on the Iranian embassy compound in Damascus on April 1.

Israel responded with a limited attack overnight on Thursday that appears to have ended the escalatory tit-for-tat attacks between the two countries for now.

Updated: April 19, 2024, 6:32 PM