UK urged to get ‘fully behind’ Abraham Accords
search

The latest Jewish News

Read this week’s digital edition

Click Here

UK urged to get ‘fully behind’ Abraham Accords

Former minister Robert Jenrick says there is an important role for us and our other allies to help to stiffen the sinews and give the accords lasting impact'

Lee Harpin is the Jewish News's political editor

Abraham Accords
Abraham Accords

Former Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick has called for the UK to get “fully behind” the normalisation deal signed between Israel and the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Morocco and Sudan.

In a House of Commons debate on the Abraham Accords, the Conservative MP said there is an “important role for us and our other allies—in Europe, for example—to help to stiffen the sinews and give the Abraham accords lasting impact.”

Jenrick observed:”In many respects, it is disappointing that the UK was not closely associated with the work done last year. ”

Thanking the Deputy Speaker for securing the debate, the MP said it was taking place to” celebrate a significant development that has occurred within the last year in the Middle East.”

He added:” The fact that Israel, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Morocco and Sudan—we note the concerning situation in Sudan that we have heard about today and was addressed in an earlier statement—have come together and taken a material step forward in the relationships, normalising relations between the nations, the faiths and the peoples, is potentially a substantial step forward.”

Jenrick spoke of the need to “nurture this fragile agreement and help it to continue and to broaden the circle of nations that have taken part in it. ”

He told the Commons his uncle Eli Rubinstein, had been the former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court in Israel, was the chief negotiator at the Camp David accords.

The Newark MP said the signing of the Accords had allowed things that were almost inconceivable just a few months or years ago.

“There have been joint efforts by Israeli and UAE organisations and businesses to take forward the port of Haifa,” he said. ” It has not come to pass but, none the less, there has been a proposal by UAE interests to purchase a football club in Israel. ”

Looking towards the prospect, not quite yet, of further deals, including with Saudi Arabia, Jenrick said:”On Saudi media, for example, the imam of the Grand Mosque in Mecca urged Muslims to avoid passionate emotions and fiery enthusiasm towards Jews, which will make a difference over time.

“Of course, it is not just the citizens of these countries who see it.

“People growing up in all parts of the middle east share the same media and look at the same websites, and they will see those images of Israelis, Muslims and Arabs from the Gulf nations meeting, sharing bread, doing business and sharing innovation, technology and security.”

Observing that the Accords had survived the latest conflict between Israel and Hamas in May, Jenrick said they have proven to be “remarkably resilient.”

Suggesting that former US President Trump’s association with the deal may have led to countries such as the UK embracing it fully, Jenrick said:”In many respects, it is disappointing that the UK was not closely associated with the work done last year.

“In 2019, I was privileged to represent the UK at the Peace to Prosperity conference in Bahrain organised by Jared Kushner, the then special adviser to President Trump.

“It was easy to be cynical of that initiative—it was very unlikely that the Israel-Palestine conflict would have been materially advanced by that conference or by Jared Kushner’s proposals—but, from spending time there, it was clear that deep relationships were being built between nations in the Gulf and the United States and, above all, with Israel, and that they might just bear fruit.

“We could see at the conference that things were changing. Perhaps it is a pity that the UK was not at the forefront of what came next, but it is easy for us to take it forward now.”

Robert Jenrick

Looking ahead to the future Jenrick said at Monday evening’s debate: “There is an opportunity for us to use our diplomatic power, our diplomatic and security relationships and our rapidly building commercial ties actively to get fully behind the initiative.

“Through that, we can support those nations who have already signed up to the Abraham accords, to help ensure that we do not see that progress slip through our fingers. ”

Support your Jewish community. Support your Jewish News

Thank you for helping to make Jewish News the leading source of news and opinion for the UK Jewish community. Today we're asking for your invaluable help to continue putting our community first in everything we do.

Unlike other Jewish media, we do not charge for content. That won’t change. Because we are free, we rely on advertising to cover our costs. This vital lifeline, which has dropped in recent years, has fallen further due to coronavirus.

For as little as £5 a month you can help sustain the vital work we do in celebrating and standing up for Jewish life in Britain.

Jewish News holds our community together and keeps us connected. Like a synagogue, it’s where people turn to feel part of something bigger. It also proudly shows the rest of Britain the vibrancy and rich culture of modern Jewish life.

You can make a quick and easy one-off or monthly contribution of £5, £10, £20 or any other sum you’re comfortable with.

100% of your donation will help us continue celebrating our community, in all its dynamic diversity...

Engaging

Being a community platform means so much more than producing a newspaper and website. One of our proudest roles is media partnering with our invaluable charities to amplify the outstanding work they do to help us all.

Celebrating

There’s no shortage of oys in the world but Jewish News takes every opportunity to celebrate the joys too, through projects like Night of Heroes, 40 Under 40 and other compelling countdowns that make the community kvell with pride.

Pioneering

In the first collaboration between media outlets from different faiths, Jewish News worked with British Muslim TV and Church Times to produce a list of young activists leading the way on interfaith understanding.

Campaigning

Royal Mail issued a stamp honouring Holocaust hero Sir Nicholas Winton after a Jewish News campaign attracted more than 100,000 backers. Jewish Newsalso produces special editions of the paper highlighting pressing issues including mental health and Holocaust remembrance.

Easy access

In an age when news is readily accessible, Jewish News provides high-quality content free online and offline, removing any financial barriers to connecting people.

Voice of our community to wider society

The Jewish News team regularly appears on TV, radio and on the pages of the national press to comment on stories about the Jewish community. Easy access to the paper on the streets of London also means Jewish News provides an invaluable window into the community for the country at large.

We hope you agree all this is worth preserving.

read more:
comments