President Donald Trump announced Friday that the Kingdom of Bahrain will normalize relations with Israel.
Trump tweeted out the Joint Statement of the United States, the Kingdom of Bahrain, and the State of Israel, which said the leaders, “spoke today and agreed to the establishment of full diplomatic relations between Israel and the Kingdom of Bahrain.”
Joint Statement of the United States, the Kingdom of Bahrain, and the State of Israel pic.twitter.com/xMquRkGtpM
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 11, 2020
“This is a historic breakthrough to further peace in the Middle East,” the statement reads, “Opening direct dialogue and ties between these two dynamic societies and advanced economies will continue the positive transformation of the Middle East and increase stability, security, and prosperity in the region.”
The United States expressed the countries’ desire to also “achieve a just, comprehensive, and enduring resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”
Trump said “next week at the White House we’ll be having a signing between the UAE and Israel, and we could have another country added into that,” at a press conference Thursday, The Times Of Israel reported. “And I will tell you that countries are lining up that want to go into it,” he added, “you’ll be hearing other countries coming in over a relatively short period of time. And you could have peace in the Middle East.”
As it stands now, it is not clear whether the small island nation will become one of the signatories of the UAE-Israel Abraham Accord, which the statement commended and will officially be signed at the White House next Tuesday. Bahrain could also issue new documentation signaling their desire to normalize relations with Israel. (RELATED: Saudi Arabia Allows Flights To And From UAE To Pass Through Its Airspace, Including Israeli Flights)
Many have speculated that other countries would seek normalization with Israel after the Emirati-Israeli agreement was announced in mid August, as reported by The Hill. Bahrain was on the short list, since Bahrain has made public overtures to Israel for decades. Oman and even Saudi Arabia were names thrown around as well.
Bahrain’s king, Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, told White House senior advisor Jared Kushner that the country would only seek a deal in concert with Saudi Arabia, per The Times of Israel. But, the Saudi government has previously stated any Saudi Arabia-Israel normalization agreement is off the table until there is an agreement between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.