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Bahrain’s Foreign Minister Discusses Bilateral Relations with Israeli Counterpart

In dedication to the widely rejected normalization agreement, Bahraini foreign ministers discussed aspects of joint bilateral cooperation and efforts to strengthen relations with Israel.

Bahrain News Agency affiliated with the regime said that a telephone conversation took place between Bahraini Foreign Minister Abdul Latif bin Rashid Al-Zayani and his Israeli counterpart, Gabi Ashkenazi.

During the call, “aspects of joint bilateral cooperation and efforts being made to enhance relations between the two countries in various fields were discussed,” according to the agency.

Ways of bilateral cooperation and joint coordination in the field of confronting the repercussions of Covid-19 pandemic were discussed as well.

In November 2020, Al-Zayani visited Israel and discussed forward steps to implement the normalization agreement signed in September of the year 2020.

Recent months have witnessed rapprochement between Bahrain, Israel and other US allies, especially those that share hostility with Iran.

In February, the Bahraini Foreign Minister affirmed that his country is with Israel heart and soul, and blesses any steps it takes in confronting what he called the mutual Iranian threats.

“I see many benefits in our countries presenting the new administration in the United States with one voice on issues of common concern,” he said at a conference for the Israeli Institute for National Security Studies,” Al-Zayani said.

“Especially Iran, its nuclear program, its missile program and its impact on the region. The joint regional position will have a greater impact,” he added.

Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz said he intends to establish a “special security arrangement” with Gulf Arab states that have ties to Israel and share concerns about Iran.

On the other hand, Ophir Gendelman, a spokesman for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, stressed that “Israeli-Bahraini relations are advancing, strengthening and serving the two peoples.”

This came after the King of Bahrain issued two decrees last month to establish a diplomatic mission for Bahrain in Israel and to appoint its first ambassador to Tel Aviv.

A few days ago, the ambassador of Bahrain to the United States, Abdullah bin Rashid Al Khalifa, boasted about the normalization of relations with Israel.

The ambassador referred to what he described as the “vision” of the King of Bahrain, Hamad bin Isa, which had the primary role in the important historical step and the courage to sign the Declaration of Abraham’s Principles with Israel, ”as he put it.

“The bilateral relations between the Kingdom of Bahrain and the State of Israel are witnessing cooperation in various economic, environmental and technical fields. It also led to important social and regional development,” he said.

“When we talk about the Abrahamic Agreement, we talk about hope, positivity and unleashing opportunities. We share many common challenges and we can learn from each other,” he said of the agreement.

On the other hand, Bahrainis continue to denounce the steps of rapprochement of the Bahraini regime towards Israel.

They emphasize that these new trends come at the expense of the historical rights of the Palestinian people and do not represent the people of Bahrain.

In September 2020, Bahrain and the UAE signed two normalization agreements with Israel at the White House, under the auspices of then-US President Donald Trump.

The agreement sparked widespread anger in Bahrain. It was also rejected by the Palestinians, who assert that it is Bahrain’s betrayal of Jerusalem, the Al-Aqsa Mosque, and the Palestinian cause.

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