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Israeli official secretly visits Dubai: Report

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Israel envoy to the United Nations (UN) Danny Danon (R) and a purported Emirati official (file photo)

A high-ranking delegation from the Israeli regime has secretly traveled to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), even as the Emirati government has no diplomatic relations with Tel Aviv.

Danny Danon, the Israeli regime’s ambassador to the United Nations (UN), made a secret, three-day visit along with his staff to Dubai to participate in a development conference organized by the UN, reported the Israel Channel 2 television station on Thursday.

The UN conference was held in Dubai from October 30 to November 3.

The report said Danon’s visit to the UAE was conducted “under heavy secrecy and tight security so as not to arouse the anger of UAE citizens.”

The Emirati government does not officially recognize the Israeli regime, which would mean that Israelis cannot obtain visas to travel there. However, Emirati authorities reportedly provided special visas for Danon and his staff to enable their trip, reported the Israeli channel.

Barring Jordan and Egypt, which have open, diplomatic relations with the Tel Aviv regime, Arab governments claim that they do not recognize Israel. They say they would normalize relations with the Tel Aviv regime only when it reaches a deal with the Palestinians, whose lands the Israeli regime has occupied.

However, there have been numerous reports and public statements indicating covert ties between the Arab governments and Israel.

In Mid-March, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said his regime’s relations with regional Arab countries was “dramatically warming.” Moshe Ya’alon, Israel’s minister of military affairs, also in February pointed to open channels between the regime and Arab states.

Also in July, a Saudi delegation headed by a former military general visited Israel and met a senior Israeli foreign ministry official and a number of Knesset members.

Anwar Eshki, the Saudi former general, met Israel’s foreign ministry director general Dore Gold, and Yoav Mordechai, who coordinates the Israeli regime’s activities in the occupied territories.

In November 2015, AP cited an Israeli foreign ministry spokesman as saying that Tel Aviv would “soon” open a “permanent mission” in Abu Dhabi. The mission, it said, would operate as part of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) based in the Emirati city.

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