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First public dispute between Israel and Bahrain: Changes in the region put Manama in a critical position

It seems to observers that a political shift in the region has emerged after the departure of Donald Trump, the “godfather of normalization”, and the recent victory of the Palestinian resistance. This shift has put the Bahraini regime in a critical position and prompted it to rethink the rapprochement project with Israel.

There is talk of disagreements, the first to occur between Israel and Bahrain and Sudan, which announced the normalization last year.

On Monday, May 31, Israel announced its dissatisfaction with Bahrain and Sudan’s support for the decision of the United Nations Human Rights Council to form an investigation inquiry into Israel’s violations in the Gaza Strip. Tel Aviv confirmed that it expected Manama and Khartoum to “vote otherwise,” according to what the Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth reported.

The newspaper pointed out that the Israeli Foreign Ministry told Bahrain and Sudan that it was not satisfied with how they voted, “which does not contribute to promoting peace in the region,” as it put it.

Public and official solidarity

The newspaper says that Israel and Bahrain have developed some differences over some matters.

On Thursday, the United Nations Human Rights Council voted to open an international investigation into violations committed during the 11-day conflict between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

The Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Islamic Resistance Movement Hamas welcomed the decision, while Israel rejected it and confirmed that it would not cooperate.

Observers point out that the popular and official Gulf and Arab solidarity showed that the recent Israeli aggression on the Gaza Strip and the previous violations of the rights of Jerusalemites by displacing them from their homes in the Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood in occupied Jerusalem, and the attack on worshipers in the blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque, represent a failure of the policy of normalization that Israel worked on.

During the aggression, Bahrain stressed, through its Foreign Minister Abdul Latif bin Rashid Al Zayani, at the emergency meeting of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation’s foreign ministers, that Manama adheres to the establishment of an independent Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital, stressing the need to stop the current escalation in the Palestinian territories.

Al-Zayani’s statements also coincided with an angry popular movement in solidarity with Palestine and demanded reconsidering the normalization agreement.

This change in Bahrain’s position finally comes after it abruptly missed last month from voting in favour of adopting the Palestine resolution on the human rights situation and the duty to ensure accountability and justice.

In its session, the United Nations Human Rights Council adopted the resolution in support of Palestine. Amid the absence of Bahrain, which normalized its official relations with the Israeli occupation entity last September.

This absence sparked sharp Palestinian and Bahraini criticism of the Bahraini regime.

Writer and journalist Maher Hijazi believes that the Bahraini and Sudanese decision is a “passing decision” and may come within the framework of the positions he described as “shy” from these countries printing with the occupation in light of an Arab, Islamic and international position condemning the recent Israeli aggression on the Gaza Strip and its heaviest crimes.

He added, “The position of Bahrain and Sudan comes under pressure also from the peoples of these countries, which came out and announced their solidarity with the Palestinian people in the face of the Israeli aggression against the Palestinian people.”

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