03:58 GMT28 September 2020
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    Israel has celebrated the deal with the UAE and Bahrain but Prime Minister Netanyahu has also faced a barrage of criticism, with tweeps accusing him of failing to handle the raging coronavirus and the threat emanating from Hamas.

    On Tuesday, it finally happened. After 26 years when the Middle East saw few glimpses of hope for a normalisation of Arab relations with Israel, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain signed treaties with the Jewish state and sent a message to the world that they'd chose peace over war.

    In Israel, the ceremony at the White House was a reason for celebration, as it indicated a new dawn in the region that has seen bloodshed for many decades.

    Jerusalem's Old City walls were illuminated with the flags of the UAE, Bahrain and the US, which had played a pivotal role in making these deals happen. Tel Aviv's city government building displayed messages of peace, whileIsraeli channels dedicated long broadcasts to the ceremony.

    Embracing the Deal

    Even Israeli politicians, who very often cannot agree on anything but their desire to see Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu leave office, have embraced the deals.

    "Congratulations to Israel, the UAE and Bahrain on this historic agreement," tweeted Yair Lapid, the head of Israel's opposition.

    "The four flags flying over the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs today. A historic day for Israel, the UAE, Bahrain and for the entire region. Thank you President Trump for your role in creating a new reality in the Middle-East," wrote Israel's Minister of Foreign Affairs Gabbi Ashkenazi.

    The ​Israeli public has also welcomed the deals and many took to the social media platforms to send messages of peace and hope.

    "This is a peace treaty, not [just] normalisation. Great achievement for Israel. Good for our economy and good for our foreign affairs. Bibi knows what he is doing. He is a leader we can trust..." wrote one tweep.
    "Yesterday, Israel had an unprecedented achievement. It was a paradigmatic change according to which Arab states sign a peace treaty with Israel without waiting for the Palestinian leadership that even this time didn't miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity..." another tweep wrote.

    More Harm Than Good?

    But there were also those, who have shown little enthusiasm in the treaties and used the social media platform to slam Netanyahu.

    "This is a mental illness. Israel is collapsing and you want us to celebrate a peace treaty with a state that we have never had a war with. All the other countries are focusing on the handling of the coronavirus crisis and only us are dealing with this BS. And you are the one promoting it. This is psychotic," one Twitter user complained.

    ​On Tuesday, Israel registered a peak in coronavirus patients with more than 5,000 people infected with the deadly virus. So far, over 1,100 Israelis have died from the disease. The number of people in critical condition exceeds 500.

    The raging pandemic and the determination to contain it have prompted the PM to launch the country's second total lockdown starting Friday, a move that sparked criticism in Israel, adding to the already existing frustration with Netanyahu and his government. This frustration usually finds an outlet in mass demonstrations against the PM.

    Although on Tuesday, while the PM was signing the historic agreements, no anti-Netanyahu demonstrations took place in Israel (apart from a small protest outside of the White House), protesters are expected to stage rallies on Sunday evening, in front of his official residence in Jerusalem.

    Now that he is back in Israel, Netanyahu will have to address their concerns and will need to show results when it comes to handling the pandemic as well as the severe economic crisis that still keeps more than 500,000 Israelis unemployed.

    But he will also need to tackle the threat of Hamas that still challenges Israel, even amid one of the country's most historic moments.

    On Tuesday, amid the signing ceremony, a barrage of rockets emanating from Gaza was launched on Israel's southern communities, to which tweeps have responded with anger and dismay.

    "Firing rockets on Israel and its south is permissible. Protesting against the PM at Balfour [his official residence - ed.] is not and entails fines. Bibi doesn't care about the residents of the country's south. A disgusting Prime Minister..."
    ​"...We get bombarded with Qassam rockets, while you sip your espresso in a nice place and discuss peace prospects with countries we have never had wars with. You are a person who got disconnected from reality, and there are many like you".

    However, the supporters of Netanyahu are not prepared to take any criticism at a time, when the PM brings Israel deals with two Arab nations, becoming the first Israeli premier to do so, and they used the social media to slam Israel's left-wing circles.

    "Poor left-wingers. Why does it hurt you so much? Why can't you accept and contain the new and the so beautiful reality with the PM going to the White House to get peace in return for peace? Tell me why it hurts you so much?..." wrote one tweep.
    "Our PM brings a ray of light and hope; a pact with an Arab country that is rich, strong and important, and at a challenging time for Israel and the whole world. And meanwhile our media is busy with seeding jealousy and destruction. Evaporate from our lives, you bunch of criminals and Israel haters. Your day will come," another tweep wrote.

    ​The signed agreements with the two Arab nations have not come into effect yet and both will need to be presented to the vote at the Knesset that's expected to ratify them in the upcoming weeks.

    Tags:
    Benjamin Netanyahu, peace deal, Hamas, rockets, Gaza Strip, COVID-19, coronavirus, pandemic, UAE, Bahrain, Israel
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