- Mike Pompeo has traveled to the Middle East in connection with US efforts to bring Israel closer to the Arab world. His first stop was Jerusalem
- Iran has been announced as one of the focus of his talks with Netanyahu
- The peace and cooperation agreement between Israel and the United Arab Emirates is seen as a "victory" for Trump in foreign policy
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo arrived in Jerusalem on Monday to meet with Israeli officials. The purpose of the trip is to support President Donald Trump’s Middle East peace plan and Israel’s proximity to Arab countries. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu then met with Pompeo in the Prime Minister’s Office.
This was according to a report by the Associated Press. Jerusalem was Pompeo’s first stop on his Middle East tour. Iran has been announced as one of the focus of his talks with Netanyahu.
One of the main topics of discussion between Netanyahu and Pompeo is the recent peace agreement between Israel and the United Arab Emirates. The Associated Press reports that Netanyahu and Pompeo will also discuss Iran and China.
Greater Proximity to Israel and the Arabs
The peace and cooperation agreement between Israel and the United Arab Emirates is seen as a “victory” for Trump in foreign policy. It is said that after Trump failed to reach an agreement with North Korea and Iran, he needed a foreign policy success in the upcoming US presidential election.
The UAE is the third Arab country to sign a peace and cooperation agreement with Israel, after Egypt and Jordan. Pompeo is now on a mission to expand Israel’s relations with other Arab countries in the Middle East. In addition to meeting with Netanyahu, Pompeo is scheduled to meet with Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz and Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi.
The Israeli-UAE peace agreement became possible when Israel withdrew its plan to annex the Jordan Valley, which are among the occupied territories of the West Bank. After meeting with Israeli officials, Pompeo will travel to Sudan and Bahrain to continue his diplomatic efforts. The possibility of traveling to another Middle Eastern country has not been ruled out by the US State Department.
During his trip to the Middle East, Pompeo also plans to improve relations between Israel and Sudan. In addition, the United States and Israel seek to reduce Iran’s role in the Middle East crisis.
Mike Pompeo enters Israel as the Israeli air force bombed areas in the Gaza Strip this morning. The Israeli military said Monday that airstrikes were a response to the launching of incendiary balloons by forces close to Hamas. In this regard, the Israeli Air Force has targeted Hamas military positions, including its underground bases.
At least 12 rockets have been fired into Israeli territory in recent days. The rocket attack has been described as the biggest missile strike in recent months. Israel says it has defused nine missiles on Friday. The Associated Press reports that no information has yet been released on the number of possible victims of Israeli airstrikes on the Gaza Strip.
There have been three wars between Israeli forces and Hamas since Hamas came to power in the Gaza Strip in 2007. There have been limited clashes between Hamas and Israeli forces over the past 13 years.