Israeli cabinet approves historic treaty with UAE

Photo: EPA Abraham Accords signing ceremony, the White House, Washington, 15 September.

Israel's Cabinet on Monday unanimously approved the historic deal normalizing ties with the United Arab Emirates (UAE), signed last month, paving the way for its ratification, dpa reported. A statement from PM Benjamin Netanyahu's office said that all ministers voted in favour of the so-called Abraham Accords, which the administration of US President Donald Trump has dubbed peace treaties.

Israel's parliament, the Knesset, is now scheduled to ratify the treaty on Thursday. It is expected to overwhelmingly vote in favour of the document.

Netanyahu said he spoke over the weekend with UAE Crown Prince Mohammad bin Zayed, saying both leaders had invited each other for face-to-face meetings in their mutual countries. "We spoke about cooperation that we are advancing - in investments, tourism, energy, technology, and other areas," he told his ministers. The two countries were already cooperating in the struggle against the coronavirus and would now cooperate on an even greater scale, he said.

Bin Zayed confirmed the conversation on Twitter, saying he "discussed strengthening bilateral ties" with Netanyahu.

Netanyahu signed the deal with UAE Foreign Minister Abdullah bin Zayed al-Nahyan at a ceremony hosted by US President Donald Trump on 15 September. He also signed a similar declaration with Bahrain at the same ceremony, which has yet to be translated into Hebrew and will hence be voted on at a later date.

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