Israel approves Trump-brokered peace treaty with UAE

Israel approves Trump-brokered peace treaty with UAE

15:11 - Israel’s Knesset on Thursday approved the peace treaty with the United Arab Emirates that was brokered by President Trump and signed by both countries in Washington last month.

Members of Israel’s parliament voted 80-13 to approve the treaty, which will next be sent to the government’s Cabinet for ratification.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he hoped the ratification of the treaty would turn Israel’s enemies into partners for peace.

“Since the dawn of Zionism we have held a defensive weapon in one hand, while the other has been outstretched in peace — to anyone that wants peace,” Netanyahu said, The Jerusalem Post reported.

“It is said that peace is made with an enemy. No, peace is made with someone who has ceased to be an enemy. Peace is made with those who want peace and not with those who remain committed to your destruction," he added.

Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz praised the American government for leading a “paradigm shift” that “will go down in the history of the Middle East and the entire world” and called for a renewed effort to achieve peace with the Palestinians.

“The Abraham Accords are an opportunity to revitalize our efforts to reach a political accord with our Palestinian neighbors,” he said. “I call upon [Palestinian President] Mahmoud Abbas and upon the young generation of Palestinians: our hand is extended to you, the time has come for you to join this journey toward peace, rather than staying mired in refusal.”

Members of Israel's majority-Arab political party, the Joint List, opposed the treaty and criticized the deal as failing to address the conflict with the Palestinians.

Aymen Odeh, the leader of the Joint List party, wrote in Hebrew on Twitter that the Abraham Accords are “part of Trump’s dangerous vision,” in particular a proposal in the White House’s “Prosperity for Peace” plan that would see the transfer of majority-Arab villages in Israel to a Palestinian state in exchange for annexation of Israeli settlements in the West Bank.

“There is only one agreement that will bring peace, prosperity and security to both peoples,” Odeh continued, “and that is the agreement that will lead to an end to the occupation and the establishment of an independent Palestinian state alongside Israel.”

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