Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid meets with Bahrain's Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa in Manama, Bahrain, September 30, 2021.

Israeli FM Thanks Bahrain King For 'Warm, Hopeful' Meeting

9/30/2021

Israel's foreign minister thanked Bahrain's King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa for a "warm and hopeful meeting" on Thursday as part of a landmark trip to the small Gulf state.

Yair Lapid's arrival was the first high-level visit to the country by a senior Israeli official since the signing last year of an agreement to establish diplomatic ties.

"The king's leadership and inspiration led to genuine cooperation and the meeting paved the way for the continuation of the relationship," Lapid said a statement released by the Israeli Foreign Ministry.

Lapid had earlier landed in Bahrain's capital, Manama, for meetings with his Bahraini counterpart and to inaugurate Israel's embassy.

Israel established formal diplomatic relations with four Arab states last year as part of the U.S.-brokered "Abraham Accords."

Lapid has already visited the United Arab Emirates and Morocco and opened Israel's diplomatic offices there since he became Israel's foreign minister in June.

Bahrain's first ambassador to Israel arrived earlier this month and presented his credentials to Israel's figurehead president on the anniversary of the signing of the accords.

The two countries had long enjoyed clandestine security ties over a shared distrust of regional rival Iran, but only last year took the relationship public.

Report by AP

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