Middle East

Israeli PM seeking meeting with Bahraini, Moroccan FMs

Benjamin Netanyahu hopes to meet Arab FMs at Wednesday’s planned Mideast conference in Warsaw

Ekip   | 12.02.2019
Israeli PM seeking meeting with Bahraini, Moroccan FMs

Tel Aviv

By Abdel Raouf Arnaout

JERUSALEM

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hopes to meet the foreign ministers of Bahrain and Morocco on the sidelines a Warsaw-hosted Middle East conference slated for Wednesday, according to Israeli media reports.

Netanyahu will arrive in the Polish capital Tuesday evening to take part in the conference, the Israeli Broadcasting Authority (IBA) reported.

According to the IBA, Netanyahu’s office hopes to arrange several meetings on the event’s sidelines, including interviews with Moroccan FM Nasser Bourita and the latter’s Bahraini counterpart, Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa.

Netanyahu’s office has already scheduled two separate meetings with U.S. Vice-President Mike Pence and U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, the IBA reported.

Issues expected to top the agenda of Wednesday’s conference include peace and security in the Middle East, the fight against terrorism, and missile development and proliferation.

Recent remarks by senior U.S. and Polish officials have led to speculation that the event is aimed at cobbling together an anti-Iran coalition.

Pompeo has stressed that the conference would focus on Iran, while Polish Foreign Minister Jacek Czaputowicz has confirmed that Iranian officials were not invited to attend.

Tehran, for its part, has denounced the conference, with Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif describing the event as a “desperate anti-Iranian circus”.

Nearly 50 countries, including Israel and several Arab states, have reportedly confirmed their participation in Wednesday’s conference, where Pence is expected to deliver a keynote speech.

None of the event’s Arab participants have confirmed plans to meet Netanyahu, while Palestinian officials say they will boycott the conference.

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