Oct 5, 2020 - World

Israel and UAE foreign ministers to meet in Berlin

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas (L) with Israeli Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi in June. Photo: Menahem Kahana. Photo: AFP via Getty

The foreign ministers of Israel and the UAE will hold meetings in Berlin on Tuesday, two weeks after they signed a normalization agreement at the White House.

Why it matters: This will be the first-ever publicly announced meeting between the Israeli and Emirati foreign ministers after many secret meetings in the past. They'll continue work on a series of bilateral agreements.

The backstory: The Berlin meeting is the initiative of German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas. It comes after Israel-UAE meetings that were to be held in Israel last week took place instead over Zoom due to Israel's coronavirus lockdown.

  • This is an opportunity for the Germans to get involved in the normalization process, something they'd been interested in doing, Israeli officials say.

What to expect: In addition to the bilateral talks, there will be a trilateral meeting with Maas over dinner.

  • Maas and his Israeli and Emirati counterparts will also visit the Holocaust Museum in Berlin and lay a wreath at the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe.

What they're saying: “The courageous peace agreement between Israel and the United Arab Emirates is the first good news in the Middle East for a long time — and at the same time an opportunity for new movement in the dialogue between Israelis and Palestinians," Maas said in a statement.

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