Israel’s New Agreement with the United Arab Emirates

Since its creation as a Jewish state, Israel has been isolated from nearly every other country in the predominantly Muslim Middle East. That's why the announcement earlier this month of the decision to normalize ties between the United Arab Emirates and Israel came as a surprise for many of us. But it wasn’t a surprise for everyone. Check out expert analysis, insight and articles on the agreement below.

Behind the Israeli-Emirati Breakthrough
Ambassador Dennis Ross and David Makovsky discuss the significance of Israel’s new peace accord with the United Arab Emirates. Hear what they had to say in a JFNA webinar co-hosted by the Jewish Federation of Orange County. WATCH HERE

Insiders Say They Saw It Coming
Some say the two countries were “so ready” that as soon as the normalization deal was revealed, ministers from the UAE and Israel rushed to open phone lines and unblock internet access. Hear from members of the UAE’s small Jewish population on this recorded webinar hosted by proud Fisher Flight alum Karen Rutman-Weiss. LISTEN HERE

UAE Chief Rabbi Asks Federations for Support with “Lighthouse Jewish Community”
Last week as a senior delegation of American and Israeli officials landed in the UAE on the first commercial flight from Israel, the Arab country’s nascent Jewish community sought guidance and support. In a webinar hosted by JFNA, Yehuda Sarna, Chief Rabbi of the Jewish Council of the Emirates, asked Jewish Federations to help establish the necessary infrastructure for a “lighthouse Jewish community” in the Arabian Gulf. READ MORE HERE

In 2004 there were only about a dozen Jews living in the UAE. Today there are close to 1,000 Jewish residents. Learn more about this community with the resources below:

  • Emirati Jewry have felt more free, vocal and prominent over the past year, which may be due to the country declaring 2019 The National Year of Tolerance. READ MORE HERE
  • The welcoming of the Jewish community is not limited to top-level UAE officials, but pervasive throughout UAE society. READ MORE HERE
  • UAE's first official synagogue, which will be built in a space created for inter-religious dialogue and peaceful coexistence, is expected to be completed by 2022. READ MORE HERE