Israeli Foreign Minister, Ofir Akunis told media that there are more Muslim countries lined up to normalize ties but it’s not Pakistan. Several discussions about peace deal between Pakistan and Israel were making rounds on the internet for past few years. Currently, 4 Muslim nations have joined the Abraham Accords, which is a deal to make peace with Israel and accept it as a legitimate state.
Prominent names of Pakistani media have supported the idea of joining the Abraham Accords and establishing diplomatic relationships with Israel.
When US President Donald Trump brokered the peace deal between Israel and UAE, such discussions intensified. They continued as 3 more nations, Sudan, Bahrain, and Morocco also signed the agreement. The issue with Pakistan is that it is an ideological nation with a strict foreign policy against Israel. It states that Pakistan cannot accept Israel as a state till the people of Palestine have their rights. Well, it did not stop some entities from disregarding this ideology and suggesting to go through with the agreement.
Pakistan And Israel Respond On The Matter
Both nations were dragged in the conversation lot of times. Now they have finally tried to make things clear by underlining the differences. Akunis denied that Israel would be normalizing relationship with Pakistan. However, he said there were two other Muslim countries waiting to sign after Donald Trump exits the White House in January.
He did not disclose the name of these countries but hinted where they might be. He said one is in the Gulf, but not Saudi Arabia; and the other is a big Muslim country to the east, but not Pakistan. Earlier this week, Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi also said that his country cannot recognize Israel until there is permanent solution for the conflict with Palestinians.
Discussions About Possible Ties
Pakistani FM’s statement came after a few days he visited the UAE to talk about strengthening the relationship between the two countries. Amid different rumors and speculations, many saw this visit as a hidden attempt to build relationships with Israel. A lot of reports came forward that Pakistan had secretly sent a top-ranking official to Israel with a message from PM Imran Khan. These reports mainly appeared via Israeli media and Pakistan kept denying it. Israeli journalist Avi Scharf also fueled media fire by tweeting about a private Israeli plane landing in Islamabad for 2 hours. This made the outcry even worse and many were convinced that something surely went down between Pakistan and Israel or they could be already friends without telling anyone.
When the media was amplifying the possible secret meeting, a bitter political clash started among the prominent political parties within Pakistan. They blamed each other for wanting to recognize Israel and violate Pakistan’s foreign policy. There were also speculations about top Pakistani generals meeting with top officials of Israel. Popular Pakistani journalist, Mubasher Lucman talked about this possibility in an interview. Qureshi said that he had explained UAE FM about the strong emotions of Pakistani people towards Palestine and Kashmir.
Which Two Countries Could Be Joining Hands With Israel?
A question arises if Pakistan is not among the two Muslim countries that Akunis talked about then what are those countries? Reportedly Malaysia and Indonesia both have said that they would not recognize Israel as long as Palestinians have no state. Oman has appreciated the Abraham Accord but did not confirm its own prospects of normalizing ties with Israel. Bangladesh was also interested in doing the same. No country has currently accepted that they would be recognizing Israel as a state. Most Muslim countries are worried about the rights of Palestinians, whose negotiations with Israel have stalled since 2014. The normalization process between various countries has further sidelined the possibility of negotiations.