Blinken to meet Israeli, UAE counterparts next week

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WASHINGTON – U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken will meet with his Israeli and United Arab Emirates counterparts next week to discuss progress made on the so-called Abraham Accords as well regional security, the U.S. State Department said on Saturday.

Blinken will meet with Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid and UAE Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed on Wednesday in separate bilateral meetings and in a trilateral setting, the State Department said in a statement.

“They will discuss progress made since the signing of the Abraham Accords last year, future opportunities for collaboration, and bilateral issues including regional security and stability,” the State Department said.

Blinken last month pledged to encourage more Arab countries to normalize relations with Israel as he hosted a virtual meeting with Israeli and Arab counterparts to mark the first anniversary of the set of landmark diplomatic agreements.

The leaders of Israel, the UAE and Bahrain signed the Abraham Accords, widely seen as a diplomatic success for former President Donald Trump, at the White House in September of last year.

Israel and Sudan announced in the following month that they would normalize relations, and Morocco established diplomatic ties with Israel in December, after President Joe Biden defeated Trump in the U.S. election.

Biden has backed the deals since taking office in January, and senior aides have said they were working to get additional Arab countries to normalize relations with Israel after decades of enmity.

Reuters

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