UAE and Israeli officials wouldn’t confirm the timing of a visit, Reuters reports.
By David Isaac, World Israel News
The United Arab Emirates will make its first official visit to Israel on Sept. 22, a source with the provisional itinerary said Monday, Reuters reports.
However, the newswire reports that Israeli and UAE officials wouldn’t confirm the timing of a visit or that it would in fact happen.
Earlier reports said a White House signing ceremony would be held on Sept. 13. That, too, has not been confirmed.
The agreement between Israel and the UAE was announced on Aug. 13 in the White House by President Donald Trump while flanked by senior advisers.
Events have moved quickly since then with a U.S-Israeli delegation visiting Abu Dhabi, the capital of UAE, on Aug. 31. Within a day they had inked their first deal on cooperation in banking and financial services.
Signals that the UAE would reciprocate the visit were plentiful with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu extending an invitation and a senior Emirati official telling an Israeli news site that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan would like to visit Jerusalem.
Netanyahu has stressed that the peace with the UAE differs from those with Egypt and Jordan in that it’s “peace for peace,” and doesn’t require land concessions.
The agreement does appear to be warmer. The UAE seems eager to work with the Israelis on a host of issues. Observers say the UAE is interested in gaining access to Israeli technology and know-how.
Although the Arabs have traditionally decried Israel as a foreign body within the region, attitudes appear to be changing. According to reports, average Emirati citizens have responded positively to the deal on social media.
Arab states also seem to have turned sour on the Palestinian cause.
A popular Arab pundit, Amjad Taha, says the Palestinian Authority is viewed as corrupt, and when Hamas supported Qassem Soleimani, head of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard, and a man hated by the Gulf States, “this was from our perspective, the end. They called this man the ‘Jerusalem martyr.’ This was the breaking point for Arab support for them.”