The first Israeli commercial flight from Israel to the United Arab Emirates landed in Abu Dhabi as part of the historic agreement between the two states to normalize relations.The flight carries several top US administration and Israeli government officials from Tel Aviv to Abu Dhabi for talks with their Emirati counterparts, as part of the White House-brokered plan.El Al Flight 971, which was listed on the Israeli airline’s website as a typical commercial flight, took off from Tel Aviv with the word “peace” in Arabic, Hebrew and English above the cockpit window.The El Al jet had the word “peace” written on the cockpit in Arabic, English and Hebrew. The flight number, 972, was a nod to Israel’s international dialing code. On the outward journey, the flight was coded 971, the UAE dialing prefix.President Donald Trump’s top adviser and son-in-law, Jared Kushner, national security adviser Robert O’Brien and the Director of Israel’s National Security Council, Meir Ben-Shabbat all spoke briefly to the media after arriving on the tarmac at Ben-Gurion airport on Monday morning.
The flight comes as part of the UAE’s efforts to expand diplomatic and commercial cooperation with Israel. It also lays out a roadmap towards joint cooperation and bilateral relations by promoting economic growth and technological innovation.
The Abraham Accord
The Abraham Accord between the UAE, Israel and US has been hailed as a historic moment in the history of the Arab World The talks followed Mr Kushner’s visit to the Middle East, where he led a US-Israeli delegation to Abu Dhabi on the first commercial flight between the UAE and Israel. Under the terms of the Abraham Accord, Israel will not annex parts of the West Bank in exchange for establishing diplomatic ties with the UAE. On his way to the airport Mr. Kuahner also visited a US Base in Abu Dhabi and made a speech.
UAE delegates wave to the departing El Al plane at the end of the Israel-UAE normalization talks, with the US, in Abu Dhabi, September 1, 2020 (El Al spokesperson’s office)
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