“Stigma of normalizing ties with Israel will remain with Bahrain rulers”

Dragging Israel into Persian Gulf will lead to tension and more insecurity, Iran warns Bahrain

October 1, 2021 - 12:25

TEHRAN – The Iranian Foreign Ministry on Friday reacted to a visit by the Israeli foreign minister to Bahrain to open an Israeli embassy in Manama, warning any move to pave the ground for the “destructive presence” of this regime in the Persian Gulf region is in line with “creating tension and more insecurity”.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh once again reminded the Bahraini rulers in normalizing ties with Israel and said their “self-humiliating” behavior in welcoming of the Israeli foreign minister is against the “will and the vote of the noble people of Bahrain”.

Khatibzadeh expressed regret that the Bahraini rulers are ignoring the “daily crimes of the Zionist regime against the oppressed but resistant people of Palestine” and said such moves will not give legitimacy to the Zionist regime and have no effect on the move to liberate the holy Quds as the first qibla of Muslims in the world.

The spokesman said the “stigma” of normalizing ties with Israel will remain with the Bahrainis rulers, adding, “The people of the region will remain opposed to the process of normalizing relations with the Zionist regime.”

One year after a U.S.-brokered normalization of ties between Israel and Bahrain, Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid marked his visit to Bahrain by opening an embassy in Manama.

“We have officially opened the Israeli embassy in Bahrain,” tweeted Lapid. “We agreed that by the end of the year, there will be the opening of the Bahraini embassy in Israel.”

On Thursday, Lapid touched down at Manama airport just over an hour before a Gulf Air flight took off in the opposite direction to Ben Gurion airport, marking the first commercial flight between the two countries.

Lapid met King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa and Crown Prince and Prime Minister Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Al Jazeera reported.

Former U.S. President Donald Trump forged normalization agreements under the so-called “Abraham Accords” between Israel, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain in September 2020.

Additional agreements were reached to include Morocco in December and Sudan in January this year.

Lapid also toured the Bahrain headquarters of the U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet, which has faced off Iranian vessels.

The accords have been denounced by Palestinians as abandoning a unified position under which Arab states would make peace only if Israel gave up the occupied land.

In Gaza, Hamas spokesman Hazem Qassem said the visit represented “an encouragement” that he described as Israeli “crimes against our people”.

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