12:09 GMT01 August 2021
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    The United States has mediated a peace deal that will see Israel and the UAE fully normalise relations and establish diplomatic ties, according to a joint statement. Israel will also suspend plans to declare sovereignty over Palestinian territories.

    There is a good chance that another country could make a deal with Israel in the coming days, senior adviser to the US president Jared Kushner said in a statement.

    He also said that the UAE-Israel peace deal may provide space for the Palestinians to come to the negotiating table. 

    "It’s going to take a while for these agreements to get fully enforced and to go", Kushner said. "Right now, the focus that Israel is going to be applying is toward building this relationship. The opportunities that are now created because of this from an investment point of view, from an innovation point of view, from a health point of view, from a tourism point of view and, most importantly for both countries, from a security point of view - are very robust".

    Asked for how long Israel has agreed to suspend its "annexation plans" for the West Bank, Kushner said, "The suspension will last".

    Kushner continued on by saying that the UAE has become one of the US' closest allies after the deal with Israel.

    "With this step actually the UAE joins a very exclusive club and becomes, you know, really one of America’s closest allies in the region", Kushner said.

    Kushner added that over the past six weeks, the United States, the UAE, and Israel had extensive discussions on the matter. The parties finished the agreement in principle a week ago and then finalised all the details in the deal on Wednesday, he said.

    The senior adviser's statement comes after Washington brokered a peace deal between Tel Aviv and Abu Dhabi, the third such agreement in existence and the first in over a quarter of a century, that puts on hold controversial plans to extend sovereignty over Palestinian lands and may open the way for further rapprochement between the Jewish state and the oil-rich monarchies of the Gulf, America’s major allies in the region.

    Delegations from Israel and the UAE are set to meet in the coming weeks to discuss and negotiate a wide range of bilateral agreements regarding "investment, tourism, direct flights, security, telecommunications, technology, energy, healthcare, culture, the environment, the establishment of reciprocal embassies, and other areas of mutual benefit".

    While many countries and organisations have welcomed the agreement, the Palestinian movements have criticised the move.

    Representatives of the Palestinian National Liberation Movement (Fatah) and the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) have rejected the agreement between the UAE and Israel, calling it a "departure from the Arab consensus and a betrayal of Arab countries and a betrayal of Palestine".

    On 28 January, US President Donald Trump unveiled his Middle East peace plan to resolve the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians via the two-state solution.

    Under the plan, Israel would have declared sovereignty over settlements in the West Bank and Jordan Valley and keep Jerusalem as its "undivided capital". According to the peace plan, the Palestinians would double the land they currently hold and receive $50 billion in investment to spur the Palestinian economy. However, Palestinian refugees would not be permitted to return to their land.

    While Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised the peace plan, the Palestinian leadership outright rejected it.

    Israel, US, United Arab Emirates, peace deal, agreement, palestinians, Palestinian Authority
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