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Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 7 March 2021

Netanyahu announces possible Bahrain visit, discusses 'fruits of peace'

Bahraini Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad has invited the Israeli leader to discuss bilateral relations

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and Bahrain's Foreign Minister Abdullatif bin Rashid Al Zayani give a press conference after a trilateral meeting in Jerusalem, 18 November 2020. EPA
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and Bahrain's Foreign Minister Abdullatif bin Rashid Al Zayani give a press conference after a trilateral meeting in Jerusalem, 18 November 2020. EPA

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke with the crown prince of Bahrain on Tuesday night and said he would visit the Gulf state soon, a month after the two countries established diplomatic relations.

Bahrain’s foreign minister visited Israel last week in a sign of the warming ties between the two countries following the signing of US-brokered accords in September. In October, the two countries established formal ties, and signed a series of agreements to promote bilateral co-operation.

Mr Netanyahu said that he spoke with Bahraini Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad about “the fact that we can bring the fruits of peace to our peoples and to our countries in a very short time”.

The prime minister said the crown prince “invited me to come in the near future for an official visit to Bahrain, and I will do this on your behalf,” referring to Israeli citizens.

In the past several months, Israel has signed treaties to normalise ties with Bahrain, the UAE and Sudan, the first Arab states to do so in decades.

These breakthroughs reflect the changing Middle East in which Israel and the Gulf countries see areas of mutual interest.

Until this year’s accords, Egypt and Jordan were the only Arab states to recognise Israel after signing peace accords in 1979 and 1994, respectively.

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Gallery: the signing of the Abraham Accords

Updated: November 25, 2020 01:45 PM

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