As the UAE and Israel established official relations for the first time in history, mixed reactions have come from several nations. The recent decision also adds a new chapter to the strained relationship between Israel and the Arab world.
Crux of the Matter
On 13th August 2020, the US President Donald Trump tweeted about a “breakthrough” agreement between Israel and the UAE.
Israel and the UAE would now have an official diplomatic relationship for the first time in their history, with the move being supported by the US. Israel also agreed to “commit” to drop off plans to annex the ‘West Bank’.
In doing so, the UAE became the 3rd Arab country to recognize Israel and have diplomatic relationships with it, following Egypt and Jordan, which did the same in 1979 and 1994 respectively.
- Official telephone calls now possible between the UAE and Israel.
- Both countries would establish official embassies in each other’s nations.
- Israeli citizens now expected to be allowed entry into the UAE, and direct flights between the 2 countries now expected to start. Earlier, no Israeli nationals were allowed in the country and no direct flights existed between the 2 nations.
- Bilateral deals in business, technology, medical science, tourism etc now possible.
- Israel and the UAE jointly declared that the “development of Covid-19” vaccine together would be the top priority currently.
- Jordan, Egypt, the UK, Spain, France, Germany, the UN, etc supported the move. Joe Biden, the Democrat candidate for the 2020 US elections, also supported the decision.
- Palestine labeled the agreement a “betrayal of Jerusalem, Al-Aqsa and the Palestinian cause”.
- Iran declared the move a “huge mistake” and a “betrayal of the Palestinian cause”
- Turkey called UAE “hypocrite” and said it will “will not forget and never forgive [the] behaviour of the UAE”. It is also considering withdrawing its embassy from the UAE after the move. Ironically, Turkey was the first Islamic nation to establish official ties with Israel in 1949.
- The Suez Canal is an artificial sea-level waterway in Egypt. It is often considered to define the border between Africa and Asia.
- The AFC Asian Cup is the second oldest continental football championship in the world after Copa América. The winning team became the champion of Asia and until 2015 qualified for the FIFA Confederations Cup.
- “Hatikvah” is a 19th-century Jewish poem and the national anthem of Israel. The theme of the romantic composition reflects the Jews’ 2,000-year-old hope of returning to the Land of Israel, restoring it, and reclaiming it as a free and sovereign nation.
- The Indian Express – After Israel-UAE-US deal: gainers and losers, and key takeaways
- The Print – Why UAE chose to normalise diplomatic relations with Israel
- Al Jazeera – How the world reacted to UAE, Israel normalising diplomatic ties
- BBC – 1967 war: Six days that changed the Middle East
- The Guardian – Turkey threatens to suspend UAE ties over deal with Israel