Sep 23, 2020 - World

Israeli delegation travels to Bahrain to draft U.S.-brokered peace treaty

Photo: Jack Guez/AFP via Getty Images

A senior Israeli delegation traveled Wednesday to Bahrain for talks on the drafting of the U.S.-brokered peace treaty between the countries, Israeli officials told me.

The state of play: Both countries need to draft a detailed and comprehensive peace treaty that will have a firm legal status and include side agreements on several fields of bilateral cooperation, according to the officials.

  • During the talks in Manama, Israeli and Bahraini officials will map the different fields for cooperation to be included in the treaty. Israeli officials tell me they want to use the peace treaty with the UAE as a template for the document with Bahrain.

The big picture: At a ceremony in Washington last week, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Bahraini Foreign Minister Abdullatif bin Rashid Al Zayani signed a "declaration of peace" — a symbolic document that spoke in general terms about the establishment of diplomatic relations and cooperation between the countries.

The visit of the Israeli delegation was agreed upon during a phone call on Tuesday between between Netanyahu and Bahraini Crown Prince Salman Bin Hamad bin Issa Al-Khalifa.

  • The Israeli delegation is headed by the acting director-general of Netanyahu's office Ronen Peretz and the director-general of the foreign ministry Alon Ushpiz. The delegation also includes officials from the national security council and other government ministries.
  • The Israeli delegation will hold talks with senior Bahraini officials, possibly with the crown prince and foreign minister.

Worth noting: The Israeli delegation travelled on an Israir plane — the first Israeli commercial airliner to land in Bahrain, flying over Saudi airspace.

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