UAE Foreign Minister Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan and the country’s national security adviser have reportedly paid a not-so-secret visit to Israel with a direct flight from Abu Dhabi to Tel Aviv.
The news of the direct flight first broke on Wednesday by Italy Blumental, a reporter working for the Israeli newspaper Yediot Ahronot, who said the Bombardier private jet had arrived in Tel Aviv after a direct flight from Abu Dhabi without stopping in the Jordanian capital of Amman.
The claim was later confirmed on Thursday by Israeli analyst Edy Cohen, who said the direct flight carried FM Abdullah and the Emirati National Security Adviser Tahnoun bin Zayed, the country’s top intelligence official.
He said the two Arab officials were residing in Tel Aviv’s Ritz Carlton luxury hotel in Herzliya neighborhood, and were even seen shopping at the local Arena Mall.
The visit was also confirmed by Syrian opposition figure Bassam Jaara in a post in his Twitter account.
This came a few days after US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo took a tour of regional countries in a bid to unite Arab countries and the Israeli regime against Iran.
In an interview with Fox News on January 4, Pompeo was asked about an unofficial anti-Iran alliance between the US, Israel, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Jordan.
“Undoubtedly. We have set the conditions in the Middle East where these countries are now working together across multiple fronts,” Pompeo said.
Pompeo did not specify the nature of the cooperation, but Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recently hailed the development of clandestine ties with unnamed Arab states and noted their shared hostility to Iran.
The alleged visit of the Emirati foreign minister to Tel Aviv was the latest indication of deepening rapprochement between the UAE and the Tel Aviv regime.
The outgoing chief of staff of the Israeli military, Gadi Eisenkot, reportedly made two secret visits in November to the United Arab Emirates, where he met with senior officials.