Top Israeli, UAE officials say new ties will make countries ‘close family’

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Israeli and Emirati officials are working hard to show that the new normalization agreement signed Tuesday between the two countries marks a new period of closeness and friendship.

In a video released Thursday, two top diplomatic officials from the two countries spoke in glowing terms about becoming “close family,” wished each other well for their respective religious holidays and spoke of the importance of the new alliance.

The video is titled “Building Bridges of Peace.”

It opens with Israeli Foreign Ministry Director-General Alon Ushpiz telling his interlocutor, “I can’t imagine something that will be more positive and bring joy to my heart than what we’re doing right now.”

That interlocutor, Mohamed Khalifa Al-Mubarak, chairman of the Department of Culture and Tourism of Abu Dhabi, replies, “It’s a very special moment, sir. I think it’s a moment for humanity. It’s a moment for all of us that we’ve been waiting for really. All of us have been waiting for this moment, a moment we can go back to our homes and tell our children that the future is going to be brighter.”

The video comes on the heels of the Tuesday signing in the White House of normalization accords between Israel and two Arab states, the UAE and Bahrain, marking only the third and fourth such agreements with Arab nations in Israel’s 72-year history. It follows Israel’s peace treaties with Egypt in 1979 and Jordan in 1994, and is widely seen by Israelis as a major achievement of the Netanyahu government, according to polls.

Read More: Times of Israel