UAE De Facto Ruler Visits Jordan Just Hours After Blinken

Abu Dhabi’s de facto ruler, Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Zayed, flew to Jordan for talks with King Abdullah II days after a ceasefire in Gaza ended 11 days of deadly violence, which put Arab governments that recently normalized ties with Israel in an awkward position.

The talks covered “the Palestinian cause and the recent Israeli escalation,” according to a statement by Jordan’s Royal Court. “King Abdullah and Sheikh Mohamed stressed the need to maintain the ceasefire in Gaza and to intensify regional and international efforts to break the stalemate in the peace process and advance it forward in the upcoming period.”

The UAE’s Sheikh Mohammed is the second high profile visitor to touch down in Amman in the past two days. U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken arrived Wednesday and met with King Abdullah and Jordan’s Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi earlier for talks on “regional challenges.”

The U.S. official later spoke to the foreign ministers of Saudi Arabia and Qatar to discuss the Gaza ceasefire and reconstruction efforts there after Israeli bombardments left thousands homeless and damaged much of the city’s infrastructure. More than 250 people were killed in Gaza and 13 in Israel during the conflict.

The UAE has not announced how much it plans to allocate for the reconstruction of Gaza. On Tuesday, Blinken said the U.S. would provide $75 million in new aid this year, in addition to $5.5 million in immediate disaster assistance after the 11-day conflict between Israel and Hamas militants in the Gaza strip and $32 million to a United Nations refugee agency that helps Palestinians.

Jordan’s king called for efforts to stop Israel’s “recurrent illegal provocations and violations in Jerusalem and Al Aqsa Mosque, which led to the recent escalation,” the statement said. The King underscored the importance activating “a political track to achieving a just and lasting peace, based on the two-state solution, guaranteeing the establishment of an independent Palestinian state on the 4 June 1967 lines, with East Jerusalem as its capital.”

Sheikh Mohamed expressed support for Egypt’s work to de-escalate tensions in Gaza and reaffirmed the importance of joint action for peace, according to the statement.

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