UAE FM, Muslim World League chief to speak at pro-Israel forum in latest normalisation drive
UAE minister Anwar Gargash and Saudi religious leader Mohammad Al-Issa will speak at the anti-boycott American Jewish Cooperation’s global virtual forum, to start on Sunday, as Gulf-led normalisation with Israel continues.
“Secretary General, Muslim World League; Chairman, The Centre for Responsible Leadership, will address the AJC Virtual Global Forum 2020 opening plenary session and discuss the need for strong Muslim-Jewish cooperation,” the AJC said.
“We’re honored to welcome UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Dr. Anwar Gargash at AJC Virtual Global Forum 2020. The minister will discuss the UAE’s efforts to promote regional stability and interfaith cooperation in a historic public dialogue,” the AJC described Gargash as.
The AJC is notorious for its hard-line pro-Israel stance and has condemned peaceful Palestinian resistance.
In September, the AJC urged the United States Court of Appeals to uphold a Texas law that bars the state from partaking in non-violent Boycott Divestment Sanctions movement.
The UAE and Saudi Arabia have enjoyed covert relations with Israel, despite having no official relations, but is now on the forefront of Arab normalisation – at the expense of Palestinians.
Last year, Gargash expressed regret that Arab states have not yet normalised relations with Israel, which he described as "very, very wrong".
Only two Arab states have official diplomatic relations with Israel – Jordan and Egypt.
At the time, Gargash told the Emirati daily, The National, that relations between Arab countries and Israel need to change to achieve progress and peace between Israel and the Palestinians.
"Many, many years ago, when there was an Arab decision not to have contact with Israel, that was a very, very wrong decision, looking back," said Gargash.
"Because clearly, you have to really dissect and divide between having a political issue and keeping your lines of communication open."
Gargash also appeared to rule out two-state solution between Israel and Palestine.
"What we are facing, if we continue on the current trajectory, I think the conversation in 15 years' time will really be about equal rights in one state," he added.
"A two-state solution will no longer be feasible because a sort of reduced rump (Palestinian) state will no longer be practical," said Gargash.
Al-Issa is a strong ally of Saudi Crown Prince and de-facto leader Mohammed bin Salman who openly urged normalisation with Israel in April 2018 in an interview with The Atlantic.