Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is accused of presenting Emirati promises and press event as campaign issues
Rabat – The UAE is canceling an upcoming event after it accused Israel’s prime minister of using Emirati commitments as election issues.
The UAE, the US, and Israel had planned to organize an April summit to celebrate Israel’s normalization agreement with Sudan. That event is now canceled after UAE officials expressed their frustration with electioneering by Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Netanyahu had touted his role in Israel’s normalization deals as a key component of his campaign strategy, announcing that the UAE would invest $10 billion in Israel. According to the UAE, Netanyahu has misrepresented the Emirati commitment as one tied to Netanyahu’s political fortunes.
UAE leadership was angered by Netanyahu, who they feel used Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed’s commitment as an election ploy and the upcoming ceremony as a photo-op.
In response to Netanyahu’s campaigning, the UAE announced it would cancel its planned ceremony over fears it would be co-opted as part of Israel’s elections.
Additionally, the UAE downplayed what it described as “our potential” $10 billion investment. The UAE’s Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology Sultan Al Jaber emphasized that the investment is “commercially driven and not politically associated.”
Al Jaber reiterated that the UAE’s possible investment is anything but a done deal. “We are at a very early stage in studying the laws and policies in Israel,” he told Emirati outlet The National.
According to Axios, the UAE has since made it clear to Netanyahu that he is not welcome in Abu Dhabi until after Israel’s elections have been concluded.
The cancellation of the Abu Dhabi ceremony was likely influenced by another country that is expressing its discontent with Israel’s current prime minister. Jordan on Thursday, March 11 decided to not allow Netanyahu to travel from Israel through its airspace, symbolically blocking him from his planned trip to the UAE.