White House senior adviser Jared Kushner told CNN on Tuesday that he expects more Arab countries to follow the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain in normalizing relations with Israel before Palestinian leadership agrees to a peace deal.

Why it matters: After hosting a White House signing ceremony on Tuesday that formalized diplomatic ties between Israel, the UAE and Bahrain, President Trump told reporters that he expects seven to nine more countries — including possibly Saudi Arabia — to agree to a similar move.

The big picture: Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said in a statement Tuesday that "no peace, security or stability will be achieved for anyone in the region" without an end to Israeli occupation and the establishment of a Palestinian state.

  • He also warned that "attempts to bypass" Palestinian leadership will have "serious repercussions" for Israel and the U.S.
  • In a major blow last week, the Palestinian Authority failed to get the Arab League's foreign ministers to endorse a resolution criticizing the Israel-UAE deal. For decades, Arab League foreign ministers have endorsed every draft resolution the Palestinians have put forward.

What they're saying: "The Palestinians see that [Trump] has a lot of sway with the Israeli public. Israel trusts President Trump that he knows what their security needs are," Kushner argued.

  • "He knows what their bottom lines are. And they do believe that he's the only person that can actually make this deal. But I think that, again, you're not going to make a deal until it's ready. We do believe that before there's a deal with the Palestinians, you are going to have more countries normalize with Israel," he continued.
  • "And when the Palestinian leadership decides that they're ready, then that's when a deal can be made. ... We can't want peace more than the Palestinian leadership wants to make peace. So when they're ready to do it, we'll be there to help facilitate it."

Go deeper: UAE minister says Israel agreement will include two-state solution reference

Go deeper

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.

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 12 a.m. ET: 33,282,969 — Total deaths: 1,000,867 — Total recoveries: 23,066,203Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 12 a.m. ET: 7,148,009 — Total deaths: 205,069 — Total recoveries: 2,794,608 — Total tests: 102,342,416Map.
  3. Business: Companies are still holding back earnings guidance.
  4. Health: Trump announces plan to distribute 150 million rapid tests —The childless vaccine.
  5. Media: Fauci: Some of what Fox News reports about COVID-19 is "outlandish"
  6. States: Cuomo extends New York moratorium on evictions until 2021.
  7. World: More than 1 million people have now died from coronavirus — India the second country after U.S. to hit 6 million cases.

Bob Woodward: "I was not going to hide" my opinion on Trump

Bob Woodward didn't want to join Senate Republicans in privately condemning President Trump but declining to do so publicly, he told Jonathan Swan in an interview for "Axios on HBO."

Why it matters: Woodward has covered 9 presidents, but Trump is the first that Woodward explicitly described as "the wrong man for the job."