visa-free travel to israel
visa-free travel to israel

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced on Tuesday that the United Arab Emirates and Israel have agreed to visa-free travel for their citizens.

 

The first official Emirati delegation arrived in Israel at Ben Gurion Airport near Tel Aviv on Tuesday.

"We are making history today ... this is the first official visit from the UAE. We are signing today four agreements that will change matters in terms of economy, science, technology and aviation," the prime minister said.

With the visa exemption, citizens of the two countries can travel across the border, Netanyahu said at a press conference held at Ben Gurion Airport.

Netanyahu is hosting a tripartite summit with the participation of US Treasury Secretary Stephen Menohen, UAE Minister of State for Financial Affairs Obaid Humaid Al Tayer, and UAE Economy Minister Abdullah bin Touq Al Marri.

The UAE and Israel agreed to normalize relations in August, and the Abraham Agreements were signed with US mediation on September 15 at the White House, opening a new era in Arab-Jewish relations. The United Arab Emirates is the first Gulf country and the third Arab country to normalize relations with Israel. The governments of the two countries approved the deal.

Israel and the United Arab Emirates are also expected to sign an agreement allowing 28 weekly commercial flights between Israel's Ben Gurion Airport, Dubai and Abu Dhabi, the Israeli Transportation Ministry said on Sunday.

The agreement, which also allows unlimited charter flights to a smaller airport in southern Israel and 10 weekly cargo flights, comes after Israel and the UAE agreed to normalize relations.