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Egypt hosts UAE, Israeli leaders for 3-way talks

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Cairo, Mar 23: Leaders of Egypt, Israel and the United Arab Emirates met on Tuesday in the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh.

The three-way meeting, focused on the economic impact of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, is the first of its kind since the UAE normalized relations with Israel.

Egypt hosts UAE, Israeli leaders for 3-way talks

Israeli media also reported that concern over the growing influence of Iran in the region was among the top subjects discussed in the talks.

What did the three leaders discuss?

Egyptian President Abdel-fattah el-Sissi, Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and the UAE's de facto ruler, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, met on Monday and Tuesday.

Egypt hosts UAE, Israeli leaders for 3-way talks

According to a statement by the Egyptian presidency, they discussed energy market stability and food security.

The two subjects have posed acute challenges for Cairo in recent weeks, especially as the war in Ukraine sent wheat and crude oil prices soaring.

The official Emirati news agency, WAM, said the three leaders also "exchanged views on a number of regional and global issues of mutual concern and relevant developments."

What about Iran?

Bennett's office said the three countries discussed strengthening ties on all levels in their talks — but did not name Iran as a main topic.

But Idan Roll, Israel's deputy foreign minister, said Tel Aviv was "committed to build a good partnership with anyone possible against the radical axis of Iran."

"We clearly see the strengthening of an axis that offers another narrative in the Middle East: that we can work together and cooperate on economic and defense matters," Roll told Kann radio.

Iran and Western powers, including the United States, were reportedly close to striking a deal to revive the 2015 nuclear accord, which Bennett is vehemently opposed to.

Egypt, Israel and the UAE are part of an emerging Arab-Israeli axis seeking to counterbalance Iranian power.

The UAE forged diplomatic ties with Israel in 2020, while Egypt was the first Arab country to establish diplomatic relations with Israel in 1979, after decades of conflict.

fb/dj (AFP, dpa, Reuters)

Source: DW

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