Israel's parliament voted Thursday in favour of normalisation of ties with the United Arab Emirates after a marathon debate with over 100 speeches lasting more than eight hours. While the UAE's deal with Israel formally established ties, the agreement with Bahrain was less detailed and included a mutual pledge to follow suit.
The Israeli team flew on El Al flight 973 - in reference to Bahrain's worldwide dialling code - and passed over Saudi Arabia with special permission from the kingdom.
Additionally, 71% of respondents said that it was likely that some Arab states will normalize ties with Israel even if there isn't peace between Israel and the Palestinians; only 41% viewed that scenario as a desirable outcome.
Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu signed US-brokered normalization deals with the Emirati Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Bahrain's Foreign Minister Abdullatif bin Rashid al-Zayani during an official ceremony hosted by President Donald Trump at the White House on September 15.
The two countries signed a joint communique to formalise ties during a visit by an Israeli and USA delegation to the Bahraini capital Manama to broaden cooperation that Washington has promoted as an anti-Iran bulwark and potential economic bonanza.
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Mnuchin and Israel's national security adviser, Meir Ben-Shabbat, led the delegations.
A new poll released from Zogby Research Services on October 15 found that almost 80% of Saudis support normalizing ties with Israel if measures are taken to achieve peace with the Palestinians. The kingdom's state-owned television channels did not carry the arrival live.
"I think the opportunity is way beyond just investments", Mnuchin earlier told reporters on the El Al flight.
The US is trying to persuade more Gulf countries to strike similar agreements with Israel.
Israel is due to send delegates to Bahrain on Sunday to formalize nascent relations and broaden Gulf cooperation that Washington has promoted as an anti-Iran bulwark and potential economic bonanza. He will also accompany Israel's first delegation to the UAE on Tuesday.