Bahrain recognizes Israel as they agree to normalize relations

Another Arab country Bahrain is now the latest to recognize Israel, according to an announcement by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Friday.

“Citizens of Israel, I am moved to inform you that tonight we have reached another peace agreement with another Arab country, Bahrain.

“This agreement is in addition to the historic peace accord with the United Arab Emirates,” Netanyahu said in a statement in Hebrew.

The broader diplomatic push by President Donald Trump and his administration to fully integrate the Jewish state into the Middle East, has brought about Bahrain agreeing to normalise ties with Israel.

Trump also made a separate announcement on the agreement via Twitter, saying the accord came following a three-way phone call he had with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Bahrain’s King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa.

“Another HISTORIC breakthrough today!” Trump tweeted.

To attest to the deal the three leaders issued a brief six-paragraph joint statement.

The announcement came less than a week before Trump hosts a White House ceremony to mark the establishment of full relations between Israel and the United Arab Emirates. Bahrain’s foreign minister will attend the event.

Friday marked the 19th anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks, with Trump saying: “There’s no more powerful response to the hatred that spawned 9/11 than this agreement.”

In the same way as the UAE agreement, Friday’s Bahrain-Israel deal will normalise diplomatic, commercial, security and other relations between the two countries.

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Already Bahrain, along with Saudi Arabia, had already dropped a prohibition on Israeli flights using its airspace. Saudi acquiescence to the agreements has been considered key to the deals.

In the joint statement passing mention was made of the Palestinians, saying the parties will continue efforts “to achieve a just, comprehensive, and enduring resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to enable the Palestinian people to realise their full potential.”

Critics of Israel’s deal with the UAE said it was no more than a publicity stunt, adding that it doesn’t represent a meaningful transformation in relations.

They said the one party who would bear the brunt of the move, Palestine, was not involved in the deal.

Indeed, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’ Palestinian Authority labelled the agreement a “betrayal” of the Palestinian cause.

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