In first, senior Moroccan official to visit Knesset

The announcement came as Israeli Foreign Minister departed for an official visit to Bahrain.

By World Israel News Staff

The Abraham Accords were in full bloom on Sunday — less than a week after a major snafu with Libya looked poised to threaten them — with a senior Moroccan parliamentarian announcing a landmark visit to Israel later in the week, hours after Foreign Minister Eli Cohen departed for an official state visit to Bahrain.

According to the announcement, the president of Morocco’s House of Councillors, Enaam Mayara, will meet with Israeli officials in the Knesset on Thursday, marking the first time that a Moroccan leader will set foot there in an official capacity.

Mayara was invited by Knesset Speaker Amir Ohana, who visited Morocco in June and gifted his Moroccan counterpart with the world’s smallest Koran, which was made with Israeli nanotechnology.

“This is a unprecedented visit that testifies to the new chapter in Israel-Morocco relations,” Ohana said on Sunday about Mayara’s impending arrival.

“In the past, one could only dream of the arrival of a symbol of Moroccan rule for a state visit to Israel. Today it is a reality full of hope, which comes to tell us about the possibilities for expanding the circles of peace in the Middle East,” he added.

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Meanwhile, Cohen left on Sunday for his first diplomatic visit the Bahraini capital of Manama to meet with King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa and Foreign Minister Abdullatif Al Zayani.

The aim of the visit is to promote trade and investment between the countries and several Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs) are expected to be signed, Israel’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

Cohen will also inaugurate the permanent home of the Israeli embassy in Manama.

A previously planned visit by Cohen to Bahrain in early August was called off by the tiny Gulf kingdom in protest over a visit by National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem on the Tisha B’av Jewish fast day.

Last month, Morocco’s King Mohammed VI invited Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to visit the North African country.

With roughly one-million Israeli Jews having full or partial Moroccan heritage and the North African country being home to several significant Jewish sites, Moroccan officials are expecting some 200,000 Israeli tourists to visit the country this year.

In late May, Transportation Minister Miri Regev, whose parents immigrated to Israel from Morocco, signed a series of deals with the country, including mutual recognition of drivers licenses.

Morocco and Bahrain, together with the United Arab Emirates and Sudan, signed normalization agreements with Israel that were brokered by the Trump administration in 2020.