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Israel’s President To Make ‘Historic Visit’ to UAE

Israeli President Isaac Herzog and his wife, first lady Michal Herzog, will make a “historic visit” on Sunday to the United Arab Emirates at the invitation of the de facto ruler of the UAE, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan. It will be the first official visit of an Israeli president to the Gulf Arab state. During the two-day visit, Herzog will visit Abu Dhabi and Dubai and will hold official meetings with the crown prince; UAE Foreign Minister Abdullah bin Zayed; and the country’s vice president, prime minister, and defense minister, the Emir of Dubai Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. He will also visit representatives of the local Jewish community and the Israeli pavilion at Dubai Expo 2020. “This important visit comes as the Israeli and Emirati nations are busy laying the foundations of a new shared future. I believe that our bold new partnership will transform the Middle East and inspire the whole region,” Herzog said in a statement ahead of his visit. “We are a peace-loving nation, and together we will expand the historic circle of peace of the Abraham Accords and create a better, more tolerant, and safer world for our children. I thank Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan for this gracious invitation to deepen our nations’ bonds of friendship.” The Israeli presidency is a largely ceremonial position. Prime Minister Naftali Bennett visited the UAE in December 2021, about a year after the two countries normalized ties with the signing of the Abraham Accords.