Eilat and Aqaba renewed cooperation on Wednesday, in a further sign of warmer relations between Israel and Jordan.
The mayors of Eilat and Aqaba decided to revive joint committees in order to increase the number of Jordanian workers in Israel, and to work together on environmental issues.
Eilat Mayor Eli Lankri hosted the governor of the greater Aqaba region, Naif Ahmed Bakhit al Tib, and Deputy Tourism Minister Sherhabil Madi. Foreign Ministry Deputy Director-General for Middle East and the Peace Process Oded Yosef, Israeli Ambassador to Jordan Eitan Sorkis and other officials from both sides were in the meeting.
They considered a proposed “peace terminal” at the Israel-Jordan border and operating a “peace park,” which would be a joint diving site, supported by the EU.
“The committees that worked together in the years after the peace treaty [with Jordan] increased cooperation in the areas of the environment, economy, infrastructure, emergency and rescue, health, tourism, education, culture and sport,” said Lankri.
“Renewing the committee’s work and strengthening the ties are an important way to deepen peace in the region.”
Yosef said the committee moves another step in “promoting and expanding diplomatic relations between Israel and Jordan in everyday areas that will benefit the citizens of both countries.”
The renewed cooperation comes as the current government has repaired relations with Jordan’s King Abdullah, with Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and other senior government officials meeting with him in Amman.
In addition, Jerusalem and Amman agreed to examine the possibility of Israel building a designated desalination plant for Jordan, while opening a solar field in Jordan for energy to be exported to Israel.