Israeli foreign minister Katz, Bahrain counterpart Al Khalifa hold groundbreaking public meet in US

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Baghdad, July 19: Israel’s foreign minister Israel Katz has on Thursday said he had publicly met with his Bahrainian counterpart during his official visit to Washington DC, marking it as a first meeting between the two nations that don’t have such diplomatic relations.

In a tweet, Katz said, “Yesterday, I met publicly with the Foreign Minister of Bahrain, Sheikh Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa.”

While giving reference to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Katz added: “I will continue to work with (the Israeli Prime Minister) to advance Israel’s relations with the Gulf countries.”

Israel maintains its diplomatic ties with only two Arab nations i.e., Jordan and Egypt, but mutual concerns on Iran have brought Israel much closer to Gulf countries in some recent years.

Israeli foreign ministry issues an official statement that said the “meeting was coordinated behind the scenes by the US State Department as part of a conference on religious liberty organized in Washington by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo“.

The two senior officials “addressed the subject of Iran and regional threats as well as cooperation between states and agreed to continue…,” it added, according to Al-Jazeera news reports.

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