The US-Israeli delegation returned to Ben-Gurion Airport Tuesday night after completing its mission to Abu Dhabi. The delegation’s historic trip was the first time an Israeli plane flew over Saudi Arabian airspace, returning even without the US contingent onboard.
- The Israeli delegtion was led by National Security Adviser Meir Ben-Shabbat and included senior officials from a range of government ministries, who were split up into several trilateral working groups to discuss diplomacy, finances, aviation and entry visas, health, culture and tourism, space, science and investments, innovation and trade.
- They exchanged more than 170 draft agreements and will now work to conclude a peace agreement.
- In the diplomatic track the Israeli and UAE officials discussed advancing the establishment of full diplomatic relations, including an exchange of embassies that will allow Israelis to enter the UAE on their Israeli passports and Emiratis to visit Israel.
- The first protocol they signed related to cooperation in banking and financial services, promoting joint investments in the capital markets. From Israel, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said: “I welcome the first understandings that have been signed in Abu Dhabi. These understandings will assist us in advancing mutual investments and widespread cooperation. We will soon announce additional agreements in aviation, tourism, trade and others.” In addition, both sides will establish a special working group against money laundering and financing terrorism.
- Israel is aiming to host representatives of the UAE government on a reciprocal visit to Israel. Netanyahu said, “We will welcome the Emirati delegation with a red carpet, just as they welcomed us.”
- This first delegation had a civilian agenda. It is anticipated that within the next two weeks a security delegation, led by Defence Ministry Director Amir Eshel and including defence ministry officials and representatives from the Mossad, will travel to Abu Dhabi to discuss joint security issues.
In the wake of the historic peace agreement between Israel and the UAE, Colonel (res.) Dr. Eran Lerman joins AFL on Aug 18 and provides insightful analysis of the deep and forceful impact this accord will have in the region. WATCH HERE
Coronavirus Update from Israel
- Thursday 3rd September 2019: Israel breaks countries COVID-19 infection level records Thursday morning as over 3,000 new coronavirus cases reported; Number of deaths quickly approaching 1,000; Number of active patients with the virus rose to 23,698, 418 patients are hospitalized in serious condition with 125 of them receiving respiratory assistance from ventilators; Since the onset of the pandemic 122,539 people have contracted the virus in Israel.
- Jerusalem has reported the highest number of new virus infections over the past seven days, with 1,307 diagnoses, followed by Bnei Brak with 533, Ashdod with 428, Modi'in Illit with 268 and Tel Aviv with 260 cases. On Monday, Bnei Brak became the second city, after Jerusalem, to record over 10,000 infections since the start of the pandemic.
- Netanyahu, following the meeting of the Corona Cabinet: "For an entire month, we had a high – even very high – but stable level of morbidity. In recent days there has been an increase, and a very dramatic increase yesterday. In the Corona Cabinet, we decided to make an immediate effort to block this increase in morbidity. We made a decision to enact lockdowns on the red cities from which infection is spreading both within the cities themselves and to the rest of the population of Israel."
- A nationwide lockdown during the High Holiday period beginning 18th September 2020 will again be discussed in coronavirus cabinet, according to the reports, but a decision on that is expected to only be made around 10th September 2020.