(August 18, 2020 / JNS) Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday denied reports that the peace agreement announced last week between Israel and the United Arab Emirates included Israeli consent to an arms deal between the United States and the UAE, calling it “fake news.”
“The historic peace agreement between Israel and the United Arab Emirates did not include Israel’s consent to any arms deal whatsoever between the United States and the UAE,” according to a statement from his office.
Netanyahu’s remarks came in response to a report by Ynet on Tuesday morning that a clause in the normalization agreement allows the United States to sell the UAE advanced F-35 fighter jets and drones.
“For the left and many in the [Israeli] media, it’s difficult to see an Israeli prime minister from the right deliver true peace: ‘Peace for peace’ and not peace for land. So today, they created fake news,” tweeted Netanyahu.
“But what to do, there are facts: Israel did not give, contrary to the claims of the left and in the media, permission of any kind for an arms deal of any kind between the UAE and the United States,” he wrote. “On the contrary, the United States has promised … that in any event, it will maintain Israel’s qualitative [military] edge. These are the facts,” he added.
Netanyahu has repeatedly expressed to the United States, including as recently as July 7 in his conversation with U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman, Israel’s opposition to the sale of F-35s and other advanced weaponry to any country in the Middle East, said the statement from his office. This included Arab states with which Israel has peace agreements, said the statement.
He followed up on July 8 with a letter that was given to Friedman and to be transmitted to U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in which “he reiterated that Israel’s position remains unchanged even following the reaching of peace agreements.”
Netanyahu also instructed Israeli Ambassador to the United States Ron Dermer to tell Pompeo in a meeting that Israel opposed the sale of F-35s and other advanced weapons systems to any country in the Mideast, said the statement.
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