| 21 May 2024, Tuesday |

Netanyahu wanted to cancel announcement of normalisation deal with UAE

According to a new book, Former Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, tried to back out of declaring a normalisation deal with the United Arab Emirates (UAE), one day before it was announced, Anadolu News Agency reports.
The book, “Trump’s Peace: The Abraham Accords and the Reshaping of the Middle East,” by Barak Ravid, diplomatic correspondent for the Israeli Walla News website, said, “on 12 August 2020, Netanyahu tried to withdraw from the normalisation agreement with the UAE, one day before the former US President Donald Trump’s announcement.”
It details the agreements which came to be known as the Abraham Accords.
The news website cited the book that said, according to several former US officials in the White House who were involved in the deal, the motive behind Netanyahu’s desire to withdraw was because of his belief that his government was about to collapse in days and that would lead to early elections.
It said former Israeli envoy to the US, Ron Dermer, called Trump’s adviser, Avi Berkowitz, and informed him that “in Israel, there is a crisis over the budget and the government may be dissolved in few days, so, Netanyahu believes that the timing is unsuitable for the announcement of the deal with the UAE.”
The book noted that Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, Jared Kushner, was upset and did not believe that “after long weeks of sensitive and secret negotiations which ended with a historic agreement, Netanyahu wants to throw everything in the trash for internal political considerations.”
Netanyahu decided to continue with the announcement as planned after evaluating the US’ response to his desire to hold off on declaring a deal was reached, according to the book.
Ravid revealed, Friday, that Trump was upset with Netanyahu, and accused the then-premier of being “disloyal” because he congratulated US President Joe Biden for his election win in November 2020.
Trump told Ravid that Netanyahu was not serious about signing a peace deal with the Palestinians and that, unless the former US president recognised the sovereignty of the Syrian occupied-Golan Heights to Israel, Netanyahu would not win elections in 2019.