On Tuesday, September 15, delegates of the United Arab Emirates, the Kingdom of Bahrain and the State of Israel met at the White House for a signing ceremony to solidify their new diplomatic and working relations, according to The New York Times. The signatories of the “Abraham Accords” included US President Donald Trump, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Foreign Minister Abdullah bin Zayed of the UAE and Foreign Minister Abdullatif Al Zayani of Bahrain. “After decades of division and conflict, we mark the dawn of a new Middle East. Thanks to the great courage of the leaders of these three countries, we take a major stride toward a future in which people of all faiths and backgrounds live together in peace and prosperity,” President Trump said in a speech on the White House South Lawn.
The Accords Declaration, published by the White House, commits the signatories to “[recognition of] the importance of maintaining and strengthening peace in the Middle East and around the world based on mutual understanding and coexistence, as well as respect for human dignity and freedom, including religious freedom.” The Accords also pledges friendly relations by means of science, medicine, culture and security relations. Neither the Declaration nor the Accords properly mentions the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict.
Other countries in the Arab World have expressed interest in cooperation, commerce and diplomacy with Israel on the precondition of a permanent settlement with the Palestinians. In August, Prince Mohammad bin Salman of Saudi Arabia upheld the importance of a State of Palestine before any recognition of Israel in his country could take place, according to The Jewish Press of Israel.
In immediate response to the Accords, militants in Gaza began rocket attacks across the border, which was soon followed by airstrikes in Gaza by the Israeli Air Force, according to The Jerusalem Post.