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Donald Trump announces peace deal between Israel, Bahrain

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WASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump has announced a “peace deal” between Israel and Bahrain, making the latter the second Arab country to settle with its former foe in the last few weeks.

Bahrain has become the latest Arab country to agree to normalize ties with Israel as part of a broader diplomatic push by President Donald Trump and his administration to fully integrate the Jewish state into the Middle East.

On a social media website, Twitter Trump said, “Another HISTORIC breakthrough today! Our two GREAT friends Israel and the Kingdom of Bahrain agree to a Peace Deal – the second Arab country to make peace with Israel in 30 days!”

The announcement on the 19th anniversary of September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks came less than a week before Trump hosts a White House ceremony to mark the establishment of full relations between Israel and the United Arab Emirates.

last week, Trump had announced agreements in principle for Kosovo to recognize Israel and for Serbia to move its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

“This is a historic breakthrough to further peace in the Middle East,” Trump, Netanyahu and King Hamad said in the statement.

“Opening direct discussion and ties between these two dynamic societies and advanced economies will continue the positive transformation of the Middle East and increase stability, security, and prosperity in the region,” it added.

Like the UAE agreement, Friday’s Bahrain-Israel deal will normalize diplomatic, commercial, security and other relations between the two countries. Bahrain, along with Saudi Arabia, had already dropped a prohibition on Israeli flights using its airspace. Saudi acquiescence to the agreements has been considered key to the deals.

The agreement will likely be seen as a further setback to the Palestinians who tried unsuccessfully to have the Arab League condemn normalization with Israel until they have secured an independent state.

That was one of the few cards still held by Palestinians in negotiations as peace talks remain stalled.

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