by WorldTribune Staff, September 15, 2020
Leaders from Israel, United Arab Emirates and Bahrain gathered with U.S. President Donald Trump at the White House on Tuesday to sign the Abraham Accords, establishing full, normalized relations between Israel and the two Gulf Arab states.
The historic deal brokered by Trump is the first time Arab nations have established relations with Israel since Egypt in 1979 and Jordan in 1994.
The event on the White House South Lawn was attended by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, UAE Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, and Bahrain Foreign Minister Abdullatif bin Rashid Alzayani.
“The thaw will also give Israel and its two new Arab partners a big economic opening, just when they are looking to rebuild after the international slowdown triggered by the coronavirus pandemic,” the Israel-based Arutz Sheva noted.
All four countries celebrating at the White House on Tuesday share a common hostility to Iran, which Trump has put under crippling economic and diplomatic pressure.
Trump said his administration was negotiating with several other Arab nations that could potentially join the pact, and he predicted that the Palestinians “will ultimately come in, too.”
“Let me tell you, when we start getting the rest of the countries in, they will come to the table, 100 percent. They’re actually getting to a point where they’re going to want to make a deal. They won’t say that outwardly. They want to make a deal,” Trump said, adding that “otherwise, they will be left out in the cold.”
Military analysts noted that the UAE has been using the negotiations as part of its campaign to pressure Washington to override Israeli objections and sell it the cutting edge F-35 warplane.
Details of exactly what’s in the Abraham Accords remain sketchy, with the documents yet to be published.
A White House official said that there would be one common document and then separate bilateral agreements between Israel and the two Arab countries.