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Benefits of Abraham Accords undermined by flight restrictions

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Since the historic Abraham Accords, bilateral trade between the United Arab Emirates and Israel has reached over $700 million in value. (Photo: @IsraelMFA)

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As yet another wave of Covid-19 rolled out, travel to and from Israel was restricted starting on Wednesday, resulting in a so-called “red list.” This includes the US, Canada, the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Belgium, Hungary, Spain, Portugal, Turkey, Morocco, the UAE, Ireland, Norway, Finland, Denmark, Sweden, Switzerland, and dozens of African nations including South Africa.

In an exclusive interview, Ayoob Kara, who served as Israel’s Communication, Cyber and Satellite Minister under the Netanyahu government, condemned the Bennett government for declaring the United Arab Emirates to be a red country:

“I think the declaration that Dubai is a red state does not help the peace process. More than six months ago, the past government was in the same situation.  They did not agree to say anything against the UAE.  Now, Israel says that it is a red state.”

“The Israeli government attacks the economic process that began since the Abraham Accords,” Kara charged.  “This is a bad situation. Most Israelis trust the government in Dubai, and we are in the process of making more agreements. What the government is trying to do is disrupt this process. They want to go back to the Road Map and the Palestinian issue. For this reason, they destroy something that we worked on successfully for years. This government did not support the Abraham Accords. I think they are trying to take steps to stop the relationship.”

Kara claimed that the labeling of the UAE as a red country is not the only step taken by the Bennett government against the Abraham Accords, as they also are opposing a pipeline from Dubai to Israel crossing over Saudi Arabia. They cite the environmental degradation caused by a recent oil spill in the Mediterranean as justifying fears the same could happen in the Red Sea.

Kara claims that such arguments are merely excuses, “They don’t like this agreement because they want to focus on the Palestinian issue. That is the real reason.  This agreement would benefit Israel and they are trying to stop the agreement. So, they look for different excuses to stop the relationship and don’t help with anything.”

They could find a solution for environmental concerns if that truly was the issue,” he maintained. “In the past, we could not imagine that there would be cooperation between the UAE, Saudi Arabia, and Israel. Thus, peace is more important than anything.”   

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In recent days, Kara just got back from Abu Dhabi in order to work on establishing a Center for Commerce in the United Arab Emirates. The purpose, he said, is to “give solutions for companies, factories, etc. that want to move to the Gulf states. We give them support and information, as well as funding.  We give them everything so that they can be successful, we give them the process to help them in every area that is necessary. This is something that supports the Abraham Accords Agreements. These people that come to invest prevent the destruction of the Abraham Accords – and there are a lot of people that want to destroy the Abraham Accords.”

With many other Israelis leaving Dubai, Kara saw first-hand the botched process of getting back to Israel due to the omicron variant, and the Israeli government’s attempt to deal with it. 

On December 16, he wrote on Facebook: “I am saddened to report that hundreds of Israelis are currently helplessly walking around the Airport in Dubai, because the Israeli airlines, especially Arkia, Israel’s second largest Airline, are delaying flights back to Israel. After waiting for long hours, passengers are not being told even an estimated time to board a flight this evening, after arriving at the Airport at ten in the morning!!!”

According to Kara, “Unfortunately, upon arrival, water was not served to the pilots and, no minimum accommodations were offered to passengers. Instead, Bennett’s visit here confirms the increased tourism flooding to Dubai from Israel, while the flights of Israeli companies are now at the lowest level of accommodation in the world.” He elaborated, “I very much support Israeli companies, but if this situation is not rectified, I will seek the services of foreign companies, Israel can do better!!!” 

Kara noted in contrast to Israeli airlines, “Since the Peace Agreement was signed, flights led by Flydubai have not been delayed for a minute!”  

Rachel Avraham is a political analyst working at the Safadi Center for International Diplomacy, Research, Public Relations and Human Rights.  She is the author of “Women and Jihad: Debating Palestinian Female Suicide Bombings at the American, Israeli and Arab Media.”  

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Thank you for choosing TheJ.Ca as your source for Canadian Jewish News.

We do news differently!

Our positioning as a Zionist News Media platform sets us apart from the rest. While other Canadian Jewish media are advocating increasingly biased progressive political and social agendas, TheJ.Ca is providing more and more readers with a welcome alternative and an ideological home.

We revealed the incursion of anti-Israel progressive elements such as IfNotNow into our communities. We have exposed the distorted hateful agenda of the “progressive” left political radicals who brought Linda Sarsour to our cities, and we were first to report on many disturbing incidents of Nazi-based hate towards Jews across Canada.

But we can’t do it alone. We need your HELP!

Our ability to thrive and grow in 2020 and beyond depends on the generosity of committed readers and supporters like you.

Monthly support is a great way to help us sustain our operations. We greatly appreciate any contributions you can make to support Jewish Journalism.

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