JERUSALEM (AP) — A joint American-Israeli delegation was set to fly Sunday to Bahrain, the place officers can be signing various bilateral agreements following an announcement final month to normalize relations.
U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s nationwide safety adviser, Meir Ben-Shabbat, are main the delegation that’s flying out of Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion airport.
Israel’s industrial El Al flight 973 — a nod to the worldwide dialing code for Bahrain — will fly by way of Saudi Arabia’s airspace en path to Manama, the place dignitaries from all three international locations will communicate at a ceremony after touchdown.
“It will likely be the official institution of the diplomatic relations between the 2 international locations,” an Israeli diplomatic official mentioned, talking on situation of anonymity pending the official announcement.
Final month, the primary identified industrial flight between the 2 international locations introduced a delegation of Israeli officers to Manama to debate cooperation between Israel and Bahrain following the signing of an settlement to normalize ties.
The choice to ascertain ties with Israel has outraged the Palestinians, whose management has blasted the Bahraini transfer, and an identical Emirati deal, as a betrayal and an undermining of the Arab stance that recognition of Israel ought to come solely after Palestinians obtain an impartial state of their very own.
As a part of the deal to normalize relations, the 2 Gulf Arab states and Israel will finally set up embassies and alternate ambassadors. The Israeli official mentioned the Israeli embassy was anticipated to open in Bahrain within the coming months.
Just like the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain is predicted to open its embassy sooner or later within the metropolis of Tel Aviv, the place most overseas embassies are situated due to Jerusalem’s contested standing.
Bahraini and Israeli officers have held quite a few conversations since asserting their intention to ascertain full ties. Sunday’s face-to-face conferences, nevertheless, are seen as one other step towards normalization.
In the meantime, Israel and the UAE have already signed various enterprise, banking and intergovernmental agreements.
Bahrain and the UAE formally signed the settlement to normalize relations with Israel in a ceremony on the White Home on Sept. 15. Egypt and Jordan are the one different two Arab states to signal diplomatic treaties with Israel, in 1979 and 1994, respectively.
The accords made public what had been a gradual strengthening of quiet ties between Israel and several other Gulf states — cast lately over a shared concern over regional rival Iran. Different Arab international locations may comply with go well with, with analysts and insiders pointing to Sudan, Oman and Morocco as prospects.
The journey to Bahrain on Sunday additionally got here as U.N. arms embargoes on Iran expired regardless of American objections. Bahrain, like a number of different Gulf Arab nations, views Iran because the most-serious risk to its safety within the Persian Gulf.
The Israeli delegation is slated to fly again to Tel Aviv afterward Sunday, whereas the Individuals will head to the UAE earlier than flying to Israel on Tuesday.