Israeli PM to fly to UAE for historic visit: local media

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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will fly on Thursday to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for a historic visit to the Gulf Arab country, local media reported Wednesday.

Netanyahu is expected to meet the UAE's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed, an Israeli government official told the Hebrew-language Ha'aretz newspaper.

Netanyahu will spend a few hours in the UAE before returning to Israel, Ha'aretz said.

In February, Netanyahu postponed his planned first official visit to the UAE and Bahrain, citing COVID-19 lockdown restrictions.

Netanyahu is running for another term as prime minister ahead of Israel's March 23 national elections.

Titled as Abraham Accords Peace Agreement: Treaty of Peace, Diplomatic Relations and Full Normalization Between the United Arab Emirates and the State of Israel, the normalization deal was signed on Sept. 15, 2020 at the White House by Netanyahu, UAE Foreign Minister Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and former U.S. President Donald Trump.

The UAE and Bahrain are the first Gulf countries to agree to develop official relations with Israel.

Egypt and Jordan, the first two Arab countries, signed peace agreements with Israel in 1979 and 1994 respectively. 

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