An American Movement to Expand the Circle of Normalization Between Israel and Arab Countries |


Jerusalem – On Monday, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo kicked off his five-day Middle East tour with a visit to Israel, while the main focus appeared to hinge on the UAE’s normalization agreement reached earlier this month. United and Israel, to convince Arab countries to weave along the same lines. .

During a press conference with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem, the US Secretary of State expressed his “hope” that other Arab countries will follow the UAE’s example in normalizing relations with Israel. “I hope to see other Arab countries join” the Emirati move, Pompeo said during his tour to Khartoum, Manama and Abu Dhabi.

The US Secretary of State referred to the opportunity awaiting future partners “to work side by side and recognize the State of Israel”.

On August 13, Israel and the United Arab Emirates announced an agreement to normalize relations between them, with US mediation. Several Western countries, such as Britain, France and Germany, praised the agreement, saying that this move would strengthen stability in the region.

During the press conference with Pompeo, the Israeli prime minister said that his country’s peace treaty with the United Arab Emirates is “historic”, stressing that it “contributes to the stability of the region”. He added: “It is a historical question, this great result we have achieved with the United Arab Emirates, working on the peace treaty and starting relations between the two countries”.

“With the help of (US President) Donald Trump and (US Secretary of State) Mike Pompeo, we were able to achieve this decision, to contribute to the stability of the region, and this will usher in a new era. for us … We also talked about entering other countries, perhaps in the near future, “Netanyahu said. .

The Emirati-Israel agreement would lift the embarrassment of several Arab countries to move forward on the path of normalization of relations with Israel

The Israeli-Emirati agreement constitutes a major diplomatic victory for the US administration, which a few months later faces a fateful electoral right as President Donald Trump aspires to a second presidential term.

Analysts say the deal would lift the embarrassment of several Arab countries to move forward on the path of public normalization of relations with Israel.

Experts believe Sudan will be the next country to conclude a peace deal with Israel, especially as the ground looks set for such a move, and Pompeo’s choice of Sudan as the second stop on his Middle East tour reinforces this reading.

And the Sudanese News Agency (SUNA) announced the arrival of the US Secretary of State in Khartoum on Tuesday, on an official visit during which he will hold talks with the President of the Sovereignty Council, Lieutenant General Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan and the first minister Abdullah Hamdok.

The agency reported that discussions were about US support for the democratic transition in Sudan and the issue of relations with Israel. The talks should discuss the acceleration of the removal of Sudan’s name from the list of states sponsoring terrorism, which the head of the Sovereignty Council previously revealed that there is a link between them and the normalization phase.

And the US State Department had previously made it clear that Pompeo would meet Sudanese Prime Minister Abdullah Hamdok on his tour “to express his support for the deepening of Sudanese-Israeli relations.”

From the reign of deposed President Omar al-Bashir, Khartoum began a path to build relations with Tel Aviv and several meetings were held between Israeli and Sudanese officials in different capitals, including the Turkish city of Istanbul, before the popular uprising broke out in 2018 and wiped out the Bashir regime with it.

The process of building Israeli-Sudanese relations with the current transitional authority was resumed under the direct auspices of US Secretary of State Pompeo, culminating in a meeting last February with the head of the Sudanese Sovereignty Council, Abdel Fattah Al- Burhan, and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Entebbe, Uganda.

Things did not go in the expected end because the Sudanese government led by Hamdok ignored him and did not involve him in this path, which Pompeo will take into account this time.

In addition to Sudan and Israel, the US Secretary of State’s visit includes Bahrain, where he will meet Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, amid expectations that this Gulf country will follow the UAE’s example in public normalization of relations with Israel, especially as this step has been cleared through public visits. For the Israeli delegations in Manama.

Bahrain was the first Gulf country to welcome the normalization agreement between the United Arab Emirates and Israel. Contact between the tiny Gulf state and the Jewish state dates back to the 1990s, before accelerating in recent years.

Bahrain and Israel share the same hostility towards Iran, which Manama accuses of supporting the Shiite opposition and trying to provoke security unrest on its territory.

Pompeo will end his tour with a visit to the United Arab Emirates, where he will meet his Emirati counterpart, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed, to learn about the latest efforts before signing an agreement to normalize Israeli-Emirati relations.

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