UAE's MBZ welcomes new Israeli PM Yair Lapid as both eye deepening relations

UAE's MBZ welcomes new Israeli PM Yair Lapid as both eye deepening relations
Both parties stressed the importance of continuing to expand normalisation efforts throughout the region, despite Israel's continued occupation of the West Bank.
2 min read
10 July, 2022
The UAE were the first gulf state to normalize diplomatic relations with Israel during the Abraham Accords [Getty]

Israeli prime minister, Yair Lapid and Emirati leader, Mohammed Bin Zayed have discussed expanding and deepening normalisation efforts in the UAE and other Arab countries in the region during talks this week. 

Bin Zayed congratulated Lapid on taking up his new 'caretaker' position, and doubled down on the importance of continuing rapprochement between Israel and the UAE, according to a series of tweets by Israeli government spokesperson Ofir Gendelman.

The pair of leaders “looked for ways to continue the warm relations between the two countries, and expressed their satisfaction with the current state of affairs - especially the growing links of trade and tourism”. 

Lapid took over the reigns of Israeli government earlier this month after political infighting led to the collapse of the ruling coalition.

“Bin Zayed thanked Lapid personally, talking about the importance of personal trust in continuing the successes of the Abraham Accords and the Negev summit” said Gendelman, referring to a controversial agreement that saw the UAE, Bahrain and Morocco establish relations with Israel. 

The Negev summit was a contentious two-day summit that brought together foreign ministers from four Arab countries with their Israeli and US counterparts, concluded in the Negev region of southern Israel on Monday.

At the time, Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammed Shtayyeh said that the summit was a "free reward" to Israel while it continues occupying the West Bank.

Lapid also wished the Emirati leader a happy Eid during the most recent talks. 

Meanwhile, Palestinian Muslims struggled to celebrate Eid across Palestine amid heavy restrictions and ongoing crackdown by Israeli occupying forces. 

The UAE, Bahrain and Morocco agreed to normalise ties with Israel in 2020, in deals brokered by then-US President Donald Trump's administration.

Palestinians see the new wave of normalisation across the Arab world as a betrayal of their cause and heave heavily protested against the move.