Abraham Accords nations' foreign ministers to all meet in Israel

"We have seen tremendous and tangible results in terms of the UAE-Israel relationship, said US Acting Assistant Secretary for Near Eastern Affairs Yael Lempert.

 US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid in Riga, Latvia, March 7, 2022.  (photo credit: EDITS PALENS)
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid in Riga, Latvia, March 7, 2022.
(photo credit: EDITS PALENS)

Five foreign ministers connected to the Abraham Accords plan to hold a historic summit in Jerusalem on Sunday and Monday.

Participants will include US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and four foreign ministers: Yair Lapid of Israel, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed of the United Arab Emirates, Abdullatif Al Zayani of Bahrain, and Nasser Bourita of Morocco.

It's the first time that Israel has hosted foreign ministers from three Arab states simultaneously. 

The meeting comes after another historic parley, in which Prime Minister Naftali Bennett met with Prime Minister Naftali Bennett the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi Mohammed bin Zayed and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi. 

Egypt made peace with Israel in 1979 and is not formally part of the Abraham Accords, under whose rubric the Jewish state normalized ties with four Arab countries; the UAE, Bahrain, Morocco, and Sudan.

 EGYPTIAN PRESIDENT Abdel Fattah al-Sisi (center) meets with Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Prime Minister Naftali Bennett in Sharm e-Sheikh on Tuesday. (credit: UAE MINISTRY OF PRESIDENTIAL AFFAIRS/REUTERS) EGYPTIAN PRESIDENT Abdel Fattah al-Sisi (center) meets with Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Prime Minister Naftali Bennett in Sharm e-Sheikh on Tuesday. (credit: UAE MINISTRY OF PRESIDENTIAL AFFAIRS/REUTERS)

Israel has, in the past, hosted diplomates from Abraham Accord countries, but never three at the same time. The meeting is also the most significant face-to-face meeting of the Abraham Accords that includes high-level representation from the Biden Administration.

Blinken did host a virtual meeting with representatives of the UAE, Bahrain, and Morocco in September to mark the one-year anniversary of the accords, brokered in 2020 by former US President Donald Trump.

US Acting Assistant Secretary for Near Eastern Affairs Yael Lempert told reporters that Blinken planned to use his trip to the Middle East from March 26-30 to help strengthen the Abraham Accords. 

"We have seen tremendous and tangible results in terms of the UAE-Israel relationship. It’s really blossomed.  Tourism is thriving; direct flights are ferrying numbers of tourists back and forth. Trade is booming. And we anticipate that that will be a big topic of discussion as well," she said.