In response to the news that Bahrain and Israel have reached an agreement to establish full diplomatic relations, J Street’s president Jeremy Ben-Ami issued the following statement:
“Like the agreement between Israel and the UAE, the new agreement between Israel and Bahrain to establish full diplomatic relations — as Prime Minister Netanyahu has publicly pulled back from plans to illegally annex large portions of the West Bank — is welcome news for all who wish to see a stable and prosperous Israel living in peace and security alongside all of its regional neighbors. It’s evidence that dialogue and diplomacy, rather than unilateral action and belligerence, are the route to long-term security.
“At the same time, J Street believes that comprehensive peace between Israel and its neighbors in the Arab world will only be achieved through an agreement that resolves the issues at the core of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and leads to the establishment of a viable and independent Palestinian state alongside Israel. Diplomacy between the US, Israel and Gulf Arab states must be complementary to — and not a substitute for — diplomacy that includes the Palestinian leadership and shows genuine consideration for the rights and aspirations of the Palestinian people.
“All those who wish to secure Israel’s future as a democratic homeland for the Jewish people must act to seriously promote a two-state solution, an end to the occupation, and a halt to the ongoing process of creeping annexation that is designed to make genuine Israeli-Palestinian peace impossible.”