The foreign ministers of Bahrain, the UAE, Morocco, and Egypt landed in Israel ahead of a landmark regional summit in the southern Negev Desert, where they were joined by their Israeli counterpart, Yair Lapid and US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken.
Blinken held meetings with Foreign Minister Yair Lapid, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, President Isaac Herzog, Defense Minister Benny Gantz, and other senior Israeli officials.
The UAE’s Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Bahrain’s Abdullatif bin Rashid Al-Zayani, Morocco’s Nasser Bourita, and Egypt’s Sameh Shoukry all landed at the Nevatim Air Base in southern Israel.
Shoukry, whose country was the first country to sign a peace agreement with Israel in 1979, joins the three Arab countries that signed the US-brokered normalization agreements known as the Abraham Accords in 2020.
From the airbase, the senior diplomats headed to the Isrotel Kedma Hotel in Sde Boker, where Lapid — who is hosting the two-day event — greeted them.
The focus of the summit, according to officials, will be on regional threats, challenges, and opportunities.
The meeting of foreign ministers is taking place less than a week after Bennett traveled to the Sinai resort town of Sharm el-Sheikh for the first-ever trilateral summit with Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi and UAE Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan — another development that followed the signing of the Abraham Accords.