Secret sections of UAE treaty to be revealed only after Knesset approval

Knesset to vote on approval Thursday, but Netanyahu will reveal the hidden sections of UAE peace deal next week.

By Paul Shindman, World Israel News

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is refusing to reveal the secret details of the peace agreement with the United Arab Emirates and will only do so next week, after it has been voted on the Knesset, Kan News reported Wednesday.

On Monday, the cabinet approved the peace agreement, which is due to be voted on by Israel’s parliament on Thursday, but Netanyahu will only discuss the confidential paragraphs next week with the Knesset’s Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee.

It is not known if two key quid pro quo issues closely connected to the peace deal are mentioned in the accord. UAE leaders have said that one of the conditions under which they agreed to normalize relations with Israel is that Netanyahu suspend his plans to impose sovereignty on parts of Judea and Samaria.

Another contentious issue is the expected sale of advanced American F-35 stealth bombers to the Emirates, a move initially opposed by Netanyahu, who apparently acquiesced to U.S. pressure in order to get the agreement signed.

The historic Abraham Accords, including peace deals with the Gulf Arab states of the UAE and Bahrain, were signed at a White House ceremony hosted by President Donald Trump on September 15.

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The agreement with Bahrain has yet to be finalized and will be voted on at a later date.

Last week, the chairman of the powerful Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, Zvi Hauser of the Derech Eretz faction, demanded that in order to carry out parliamentary oversight of the process, the subcommittee on intelligence and secret services must receive a report on the secret and classified details of the UAE agreement.

Netanyahu agreed but set next Tuesday to testify to the committee, several days after the official and final approval of the agreement in the Knesset plenum.

Hauser expressed his frustration at Netanyahu’s refusal to cooperate.

“I do not understand why things should become crooked when they can be done straight,” Hauser told the Maariv newspaper. “The agreement with the Emirates is an important, worthy, and good agreement. Like any agreement it has classified aspects, but the Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee is the place to talk about them, expose them, and criticize them in plenary.”

Hauser said Netanyahu should have first brought the agreement to his committee for review and only then to the plenum.

“I can already say that I support the agreement, even if we have not yet discussed and been presented with the same classified clauses. A hearing is scheduled for the 20th of the month, but it is a pity it was done that way,” Hauser said, given that the parliamentary oversight of the agreement will be at a stage where it can no longer influence or change it, if required.