The trilateral meeting between Foreign Minister Antony Blinken and the foreign ministers of Israel and the United Arab Emirates on Wednesday marks the Biden administration’s late embrace of the Abrahamic Agreement.
why it matters: Normalization deals between Israel and the four Arab countries were a landmark foreign policy achievement of Donald Trump, and while the Biden administration has long said it wants to pursue them, it has only recently begun to take steps in that direction. .
- Senior administration officials were previously reluctant to use the term “Abraham Agreement”, which is closely associated with Trump.
- But since the first anniversary in September, the administration has been not only discussing the agreements but celebrating them.
state of play: Blinken held a virtual meeting last month with his Israeli, Emirati, Bahraini and Moroccan counterparts to celebrate the anniversary.
- US diplomats also attended a public visit by the Foreign Ministers of Israel and Bahrain at the headquarters of the 5th Fleet in Manama, and the US charge d’affaires in Jerusalem spoke with Jared Kushner at an event to celebrate the agreement in the Israel Knesset Of.
Between the lines: Israeli and Emirati officials think the Biden administration is trying to counter the narrative that it is pulling out of the region, especially after its withdrawal from Afghanistan.
- “They understood that this could be their victory after Afghanistan,” one Israeli official told me, noting that the agreements provide a positive agenda in the region.
running news: Israel’s Foreign Minister Yair Lapid featured prominently in his meetings with Vice President Kamala Harris and National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan on Tuesday to strengthen the Abrahamic Agreement and include more countries.
- The main action item in Wednesday’s tripartite meeting was the formation of two tripartite parties, one on promoting religious coexistence and the other on cooperation in water and energy.
What will happen next: The Biden administration is trying to get Sudan to sign a normalization deal with Israel that has been sitting on the shelf for months. Sudan’s domestic political crisis is stalling progress right now.