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Menahem Kahana/AFP via Getty

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will meet tomorrow in Abu Dhabi with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed, sources familiar with the matter tell me.

Why it matters: Netanyahu will use the trip — which comes less than two weeks before the Israeli elections — to rally his base and stress his foreign policy advantage over his less experienced rivals.

  • This will be the first-ever official trip by an Israeli prime minister to the UAE and the first trip for Netanyahu since the signing of the Abraham Accords with the UAE and Bahrain at the White House.

The state of play: Netanyahu is in need of a boost. His right-wing bloc is short of the 61 seats needed for a majority in the latest polls.

Behind the scenes: Netanyahu raised the possibility of the visit in a phone call with the crown prince 10 days ago, but the Emiratis hesitated due to concerns about perceived interference in the Israeli elections.

  • Netanyahu sent Yossi Cohen, director of the Mossad intelligence agency, to press his Emirati counterparts, sources familiar with the matter tell me.
  • The Emiratis sent signals that they'd rather postpone the visit until after the elections, but Netanyahu and Cohen pressed hard until the Emiratis agreed.

Worth noting: Netanyahu will spend only a few hours on the ground. It's unclear whether he gave the Emiratis anything in return for the visit.

Go deeper

Miriam Kramer, author of Space
2 hours ago - Science

China makes history with successful Mars landing

A model of the Tianwen-1 Mars rover is displayed during an exhibition at the National Museum of China in Beijing. Photo: Wang Zhao/AFP via Getty Images

A Chinese lander carrying a rover successfully touched down on Mars for the first time, state media reports.

Why it matters: This is the first time China has landed a spacecraft on another planet, and it launches the nation into an elite club of only a few space agencies to successfully make it to the Martian surface.

2 hours ago - World

UN: 10,000 Palestinians displaced in Gaza as Israel-Hamas fighting escalates

A Palestinian woman walks after she collects her belongings inside her damaged house following an Israeli air in the northern Gaza Strip. Photo: Ahmed Zakot/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

The United Nations warned Friday that ongoing fighting between Israel and Hamas "has the potential to unleash an uncontainable security and humanitarian crisis," in not only the occupied Palestinian territories and Israel, but "the region as a whole."

The big picture: More than 125 Palestinians, including 31 children have been killed in Gaza since fighting began Monday, per the Palestinian Ministry of Health. Eight people, including two children, have been killed in Israel, Reuters reported, citing Israeli authorities.