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Photo: Karim Sahib/AFP via Getty Images

The Palestinian Authority failed on Wednesday to get the Arab League's foreign ministers to endorse a resolution criticizing the U.S.-brokered normalization deal between Israel and the United Arab Emirates.

Why it matters: This is a very unusual development and a big blow to the Palestinians, who hold the rotating presidency of the Arab League. For decades, Arab League foreign ministers have endorsed every draft resolution the Palestinians have put forward.

  • After the Trump administration's Middle East peace plan was released in January, the Palestinians managed to get the Arab League to condemn the plan — but, this time, many Arab countries refused to condemn the UAE.
  • The Arab League’s Assistant Secretary-General Hossam Zaki said during a press conference after the meeting that the foreign ministers discussed the Palestinian text and entered several amendments, but they couldn’t reach a consensus and decided not to put out any statement on the Israel-UAE agreement.

What they're saying: Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki condemned the Israel-UAE agreement in his speech and called upon Arab countries to announce that there will be no normalization with Israel before the establishment of a Palestinian state with its capital in East Jerusalem.

  • Emirati Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash defended his country’s decision in his speech. He said the normalization agreement was not done at the expense of the Palestinians, adding that the deal managed to stop Israel’s annexation plans in the West Bank.
  • Other foreign ministers — mainly the Saudi foreign minister — pledged their support for the Palestinians and their aspirations, but stopped short of criticizing the UAE.

What’s next: The White House plans to invite foreign ministers and ambassadors from many Arab countries to attend the deal's signing ceremony next week in order to show the deal has Arab support.

  • It is still unclear how many Arab countries will send representatives.

Go deeper

Dec 9, 2020 - World

Biden and Netanyahu are on a collision course over Iran

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photos: Eric Baradat (AFP), Gali Tibbon (AFP)/Getty Images

The incoming Biden administration and the Israeli government are on a collision course over the future of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal.

Why it matters: There is a growing gap between Biden’s stated intention to re-enter the deal and Israel’s expectations and public demands against it.

Updated 15 mins ago - Science

Volcanic eruption in Tonga caused "significant" damage

This satellite image of the eruption on Jan. 15 taken by Himawari-8, a Japanese weather satellite operated by Japan Meteorological Agency and released by National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NICT). Photo: NICT via AP

Significant damage has been reported in Tonga following an undersea volcanic eruption on Saturday, which covered the Pacific nation in ash and cut off communication lines.

Driving the news: The eruption triggered tsunami warnings across Tonga's islands and in other regions, including the West Coast of the U.S. and New Zealand.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Trump dogs "dull" DeSantis ahead of potential 2024 matchup

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Paul Hennessy/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Donald Trump is trashing Ron DeSantis in private as an ingrate with a "dull personality" and no realistic chance of beating him in a potential 2024 showdown, according to sources who've recently talked to the former president about the Florida governor.

Why it matters: The two are among the most popular Republicans in the country, and as the former president eyes another run in 2024, he's irked by DeSantis' popularity and refusal to rule out running against him.