Israel and the United Arab Emirates have reached a deal to normalise relations, with Israel agreeing to suspend its controversial plans to annex parts of the occupied West
In a surprise statement by US President Donald Trump,
who helped broker it, the countries called the accord
“historic” and a breakthrough toward peace.
Until now Israel has had no diplomatic relations with Gulf
But shared worries over Iran have led to unofficial contacts
Palestinian leaders were reportedly taken by surprise. A spokesman for President Mahmoud Abbas said the deal amounted to “treason”, and the Palestinian ambassador to the UAE was being recalled.
President Trump called the deal between Prime Minister
Netanyahu and Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin
Zayed Al Nahyan “a truly historic moment”. It marks only the third Israel-Arab peace deal since Israel’s declaration of independence in 1948, after Egypt and Jordan.
“Now that the ice has been broken I expect more Arab and Muslim countries will follow the United Arab Emirates,” he told reporters in the Oval Office, saying there would be a signing ceremony at the White House in the coming weeks.
Earlier, in response to a President Trump’s tweeted announcement, Mr Netanyahu wrote in Hebrew: “Historic
A foreign policy victory?
In a TV address Mr Netanyahu said he had “delayed” West Bank annexation plans, but those plans remain “on
the table”. Annexation would make some West Bank areas officially part of Israel.
“There is no change in my plan to apply our sovereignty to Judea and Samaria [West Bank] in full co-ordination with
the US. I’m committed to it. That hasn’t changed. I remind you that I was the one who put the issue of sovereignty over Judea and Samaria on the table. This issue remains on the table,” he said.
Mr Netanyahu said Israel would co-operate with the UAE in developing a coronavirus vaccine, in energy, water,
environmental protection and many other fields.
Analysts say the deal could mean a foreign policy victory for President Trump, who will seek re-election in
November, and give a personal boost to Prime Minister Netanyahu, who is on trial for alleged corruption. Both leaders have seen their approval ratings drop because of their response to the coronavirus pandemic.
And in Israel, some on the right who want to annex the West Bank expressed anger over the announcement.
The UAE’s ambassador to the US, Yousef Al Otaiba, said the deal with Israel was “a win for diplomacy and for the
region”, adding: “It is a significant advance in Arab-Israeli relations that lowers tensions and creates new energy for positive change”.
Senior Trump adviser Jared Kushner said he did not think Israel would move ahead with any annexation before
discussing it first with the US. He said he expected to see interactions “very quickly” between Israel and the UAE.
Egypt signed a deal with Israel in 1979, and Jordan in 1994. Mauritania also established diplomatic ties with
Israel in 1999, but froze the deal in 2009.
The establishment of full diplomatic relations;
the exchange of embassies; and normal trade ties between Israel and the UAE is a significant diplomatic step forward. But inevitably it raises questions. Will the full promise of this agreement be realised? And might other Gulf countries follow a similar path?
It is also important to see what it is not. This is far from the comprehensive peace plan to resolve the Palestinian question that President
Trump has long promoted. However, there are short-term benefits for all sides.
The White House was first off the mark in announcing the deal; it is perhaps a small diplomatic feather in President Trump’s cap at a time when his re-election prospects are looking more difficult.
For Israel’s embattled Prime Minister
Netanyahu, it gets him off a hook of his own making; his much-vaunted promise to annex key parts of the occupied West Bank. This has proved undeliverable, not least due to US
ambivalence and significant international opposition. Mr Netanyahu may see this “peace initiative” with the UAE as something that could bolster his chances if he precipitates a further
Israeli general election.
For the UAE, it is harder to say precisely what the immediate benefits are, though its relations with Washington will be strengthened and the deal with Israel may yield significant economic,
security and scientific benefits.
Overall this is an agreement that potentially could offer both more and less than might first appear. And as far as the Palestinians are concerned, it is hard to see this news creating anything other than frustration, that they have once again been pushed to the sidelines.
What has been agreed?
In the coming weeks delegations from Israel and the UAE will meet to sign bilateral deals regarding investment, tourism, direct flights, security, telecommunications, technology, energy, healthcare, culture, the environment, the establishment of reciprocal embassies, and other areas of mutual benefit.
“Opening direct ties between two of the Middle East’s most dynamic societies and advanced economies will transform the region by spurring economic growth, enhancing
technological innovation, and forging closer people-to-people relations,” the joint statement
Israel will also “suspend declaring sovereignty over areas outlined” in President Trump’s Vision for Peace between Israel and the Palestinians, in which he backed an Israeli plan to annex Jewish settlements in the West
Bank and the strategic Jordan Valley.
● What does Trump’s Mid-East plan say
on key issues?
● Explainer: Israel, annexation and the
The Palestinians have warned that such a move would destroy their hopes of a viable future independent state and violate international law – a stance supported by much of the international community.
The UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Anwar Gargash, said the UAE’s recognition of Israel was “a very bold step” to stop the “ticking time bomb” of Israel’s annexation of the West Bank. He said the UAE saw this as “a
stoppage of the annexation, not a suspension”.
Asked about Palestinian criticism of the UAE move, he recognised that the region was very
polarised and he expected to hear “the usual noise”. “We agonised over this,” he said, but eventually decided “let’s do it”.
The joint statement says Israel will “focus its efforts now on expanding ties with other countries in the Arab and Muslim world”, and that the US and UAE will work to achieve that goal.
The UAE and Israel will also join the US to launch a “Strategic Agenda for the Middle East”, with the three leaders noting that they “share a similar outlook regarding the threats and opportunities in the region, as well as a
shared commitment to promoting stability through diplomatic engagement, increased economic integration, and closer security
How have others reacted?
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said “it was my profound hope that annexation did not go ahead in the West Bank and today’s agreement to suspend those plans is a welcome step on the road to a more peaceful
Egyptian President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi
welcomed the deal while Jordan’s Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi said the agreement could help push ahead stalled peace negotiations.
But a senior Palestinian official, Hanan
Ashrawi, condemned the deal, saying the UAE had “come out in the open on its secret dealings/normalisation with Israel” and telling Prince Mohammed: “May you never be sold out by your ‘friends’.”
Iran’s foreign ministry called the accord
“shameful”, according to state news agency IRNA. And in Gaza, the Hamas militant group called the deal a “stabbing in the back of our people.”
All you need to know about the Armenia-Azerbaijan Clash
All you need to know about the Armenia-Azerbaijan Clash
Armenia and Azerbaijan is a small country located in between Turkey, Russia and Iran. Armenia is mostly a christian majority country with 95% of it’s 30 million population practising christanity and Azerbaijan comprises 99% of muslim population. This conflict can escalate into a full fledged war according to experts.The population of Azerbaijan is 10 million and both are secular countries. The conflict is about a small region called Nagorno-Karabakh region. Both of these countries were part of the USSR till 1990. Both these countries attained independence from the USSR in 1991. This Nagorno-Karabakh region is partially occupied by both Armenia and Azerbaijan. This region is a heavy mountainous region and it is tough to access this region. According to the 2015 census only 1.5 lakh people live in this Nagorno-Karabakh region in an area of 4400 square kilometers. This population of this region is ethnically Armenian.
This region has been disputed since 1920 when both these countries were part of the erstwhile Soviet Union. This region belonged to Azerbaijan till 1990 and it was an autonomous region controlled by Moscow directly. When the USSR split then Moscow decided to hand over this region to Azerbaijan but then the local provincial assembly voted to stay with Armenia. This voting was opposed by Moscow and Azerbaijan governments. After this the Armenian separatists occupied a part of the Nagorno-Karabakh region and they have been running the government in that part backed by the government of Armenia. But according to the International law this region is part of Azerbaijan because when this region was split up in 1991 then Moscow had decided to merge this territory with Azerbaijan.
This region has seen heavy ceasefire violations since 1991 up till 2020. Recent clashes have continued over several days. You can understand this territory similarly like Kashmir where both India and Pakistan claim Kashmir. In May 1994 USA, France and Russia had tried to implement a ceasefire so that these countries could talk and negotiate but all in vain. This conflict started on 27 september 2020 and since then both countries have said that the other one broke the ceasefire first. Russia plays a very important role here. Russia has a military base in Armenia and it supplies weapons to Azerbaijan but it has not said a word over this conflict.
Turkey on the other hand supports Azerbaijan openly since Turkey and Azerbaijan have strong relations and Armenia does not have good relations with Turkey. In the first week of October Turkish F-16s were seen in Armenian airspace thus, adding fuel to the fire. Turkey has openly said that it will provide military support to Azerbaijan if needed and it is trying to flex its muscle power in the region. Turkey and Azerbaijan being muslim countries are natural allies. Armenian foreign minister has said that this conflict is a preplanned strategy of Azerbaijan with Turkish support.
Turkey is a bigger country and it wants to influence a smaller nation like Azerbaijan. Turkey buys crude oil and gas from Azerbaijan and similarly Azerbaijan is one of the main investors of Turkey. So it is natural that they will come together. Their economic ties are stronger than ever. On the other side Turkey and Armenia have strain relations. During the ottoman empire a genocide was conducted over the armenians by the turks. This charge is denied by the Turkey government and so does Azerbaijan deny it in the support of its ally.
Azerbaijan is a republic just for namesake. Actually it is a dictatorship. After its split from the USSR their first president was Heydar Aliyev in 1991. He was president till 2003 then his son Ilham Aliyev succeeded him in 2003 and he has been the president since then. Ilham Aliyem has won every successive election since 2003 with over 80% vote share and it shows that there is no opposition in the country. Foreign journalists are not allowed to work freely and there are over 160 political prisoners. There is no free media in this country. So you can imagine if it is really a democracy. Whoever raises voice against the president then he/she is thrown into jails. Recently, in 2016 Aliyev held a controversial referendum according to which the minimum age to become the president of Azerbaijan has been brought down to 18 from 35. According to political experts this has been done so that his son can succeed him in 2025. There is no free press and this country ranks 146/157 in the global democracy index. You can imagine the scenario.
On the contrary Armenia ranks 86/167 and it is in a better position than Azerbaijan. Till 2018 Armenia was itself a dictatorship. In 2018 25 lakh people had protested on roads out of its 30 lakh odd population. The protestors were protesting over the election fraud conducted by the then PM. 2.50 lakh people were on roads and not a single bullet was fired. It was a huge success. The Velvet revolution led to the establishment of democracy in Armenia. The then opposition leader Nikol Pashniyan under whom this revolution was initiated had been elected as the PM in 2018 and he is the PM currently. You can understand the situation yourself.
Azerbaijan kids are taught to hate Armenians naturally on account of nationalism. This is the propaganda being spread by the Azerbaijan government. Their economy is in turmoil because of low crude oil prices. But people are taught to think about nationalism. According to a 2012 poll 91% Azerbaijan people think that Armenians are their natural enemy and similarly 63% Armenians agree the same. Armenians are described as Bandits, hippocrates in the Azerbaijan books. In 2011, famous Azerbaijani chess player Taimur Radjabov had said that he hates armenians. Such is the scale of hate in between these 2 nations. In 1988 and 1989 3.5 lakh people were affected due to this conflict.
In July a major protest occurred in Azerbaijan and people marched to the parliament of their country and demanded that their president declare war on Armenia. Such is the scale of nationalism. They protested not on account of depreciating economy or dictatorship but to declare war. Such is the propaganda that Azerbaijani people are taught to hate Armenians. Nothing concrete will come out of it. You decide. What should be done?
Amid covid 19 is it okay to fight?
Indian economy to shrink 5.9% with ‘permanent income loss
The number of cases rising in India is unlikely going to ebb anytime soon. While India is setting the record for the highest surge in numbers of coronavirus cases in a single day, the Indian government on Monday announced the country’s biggest economic contraction in 24 years.
India’s economy to witness a great contraction of 5.9% by the end of 2020 predicted by The United Nations’ Conference on Trade and Development in a report, warning that while growth will rebound next year, the contraction is likely to translate into a permanent income loss.
Stressed days ahead:
Pandemic puts more pressure on India’s stressed economy. COVID-19 is slamming every possible sector across the nation and also triggered massive job loss.
Even the job portal launched by the government in July has seen the humungous registration of over 6.9 million people in just 40 days, reported by The Indian Express.
India had never tallied a quarter of negative growth since it commenced issuing such data publicly in 1996. Furthermore, no other big economy has shrunk with such a ratio during the pandemic. In the same period, America’s GDP fell by 9.1%. India’s economy had been stumbling before COVID-19.
While we think the situation in Indian related to the economy has worsened during the galloping outbreak, experts say that the country’s economic indicators were already to it’s worst side before the pandemic.
The complete Wipeout:
‘Already the quake of Covid-19 has triggered another round of cuts in central bank policy rates for advanced economies that had favorable ratios before the crisis and also for many developing economies, which even includes the high inflation countries such as Argentina and Turkey’, a report by UNCTAD described.
Further, the world is grappling with the equivalent of a complete Wipeout of the Brazilian, Mexican, Indian economies.
The domestic activities are contracting, eventually affecting the international economy. In a view to the future, it will shrink by around one-fifth this year and foreign direct investment shall blow by up to 40%.
Triggered massive job loss:
“What is happening after the pandemic cannot be seen without what was happening before the pandemic. The jobs were already collapsing, the growth rate had declined. The situation was already terrible, and it further worsened because of the pandemic”, Ritu Dewan, Vice President of the Indian Society of Labour Economics and former director of the Department of Economics at the University of Mumbai, told Anadolu Agency.
For India, UNCTAD’s report added, “The baseline scenario is a sharp recession in 2020 as straight lockdown measures to stem the virus’ spread brought many productive activities to halt across the country. Although we expect a rebound in 2021 in line with growth rates of the Indian economy in recent years, the contraction registered in 2020 is likely to translate into a permanent job loss”.
V-shaped recovery will be misled:
“Forecasters talk of a V-shaped recovery is misleading. Such a recovery would require double-digit global growth next year, which is out of the question”, said Richard Kozul – Wright, UNCTAD’s director of the division on globalisation and development strategies.
Assessing the report, it asserted that a global recovery plan is in need of both bold and comprehensive invasion, built around a collaborative macroeconomic expansion focused on job creation and higher wages and supported by a big public investment push into cleaner energy, environmental protection, sustainable transport systems, and the care economy.
Following the report, 90-120 million people from developing nations will be thrust into extreme poverty, with approximately 300 million people facing food insecurity.
The existence of future generations, indeed of the planet itself, entirely depended on the options we all pick over the coming months.
Viral Video of crying Chinese. Are Chinese soldiers scared of Indian soldiers?
Recently, a short video of just few seconds got viral on social media depicting Chinese soldiers sobbing and singing “Green Flowers in the Army” in a bus. Soldiers seem to be too young.
The video didn’t take much time to get viral on twitter and Facebook.
This Viral Video was tweeted by a well renowned network, Taiwan News on Sunday. People got curious to know the exact reason behind the misadventure of these young People’s Liberation Army (PLA) soldiers.
The video location is to be known at Fuyang Railway Station while the troops were preparing to head to a military camp in Hebei province, according to Taiwan News.
This led to a war of words between mainland Chinese and Taiwanese media.
Taiwanese media like Liberty Times and Taiwan News, didn’t miss this chance to mock the soldiers for crying and clearly showing their weakness in the video.
Many are saying that this action of Chinese soldiers distinctly portraying that now Chinese are afraid of Indians after lately realising how powerful India is.
Indians too didn’t stand back in retweeting and sharing the video on social media.
China newspaper, Global Times defended by saying – “At that time, they were bidding farewell to their parents and sang the famous military song ‘Green Flowers in the Army’, and they sang ‘Go home when you celebrate your work’, completely contrary to the mood created by Taiwanese media,”. Chinese media debunks Taiwanese claim. China also added saying that Taiwan took video out of context and attempting to tarnish image of PLA troops.
Chinese media said that the soldiers got just too emotional, Taiwanese are just deliberately trying to manipulate the video and creating an issue.
Tension between India and China has been high since the standoff between Indians and Chinese armies in galwan valley in June this year.
Is china really scared of India? Or it’s just another trap for India to make India confuse?
Whatever it might be, but India is always ready to face it courageously with all its strength.
Indian soldiers will happily sacrifice their life for love for their motherland, if needed.
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