Jerusalem, Sept. 7, 2020 Annual trade between Israel and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is expected to reach $4 billion, an Israeli minister said on Monday.
Israel and the UAE announced in August they would normalise diplomatic relations in a deal brokered by Washington.
The UAE has since announced it was scrapping an economic boycott on Israel and officials from the two countries have said they were looking at cooperation in defense, energy, medicine, tourism, technology and financial investment.
A number of Israeli and Emirati businesses have signed deals since the normalisation accord was announced.
“Within three to five years, trade between Israel and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) will reach $4 billion,” Israeli Intelligence Minister Eli Cohen told Israel’s Reshet Bet radio station.
A spokesman for Cohen, Israel’s former economy minister, said the figure was annual and included defence trade.
Israeli carrier Israir said on Sunday it had reserved slots for commercial flights from Tel Aviv to the UAE, preparing for potential tourism.
The heads of Israel’s two biggest banks will travel to the UAE this month, the first such visits since the countries agreed to normalise relations.
Edited By: Fatima Sule/Wale Ojetimi
King of Jordan, Abdullah seeks end to Palestinian-Israeli conflict
Jordan’s King Abdullah said on Tuesday that the only way to end the Palestinian-Israeli conflict was through the two-state solution in accordance with international law and the United Nations (UN) resolutions.
“The Palestinian-Israeli conflict is the one conflict that started with the UN’s formation and that continues to fester to this very day,” Abdullah told the United Nations General Assembly.
He added that the only way for a just and lasting peace “is an independent, sovereign, and viable Palestinian state on the 1976 lines with Jerusalem as its capital, living side by side with Israel in mutual peace and security.
“We cannot resolve this conflict without working to preserve Jerusalem for all humanity as a unifying city of peace.”
He called on the UN not to rest “as long as injustice and lack of peace persist anywhere in the world.
“The UN must not rest, we must not rest,” he added.
According to him, the coronavirus has exposed the cracks in the global system.
He called for rethinking the role of the UN and other multilateral organisations “to become more impactful in dealing with challenges old and new, be they pandemics or regional conflicts.”
Edited By: Emmanuel Yashim
China not interested in ‘hot or cold war’ — Jinping
President Xi Jinping of China on Tuesday told the United Nations General Assembly that he had no intention to engage any country in “a cold or hot war”.
Jinping’s remark came amid rising tensions between China and the U,S., whose president, Donald Trump, attacked Beijing in his speech earlier.
“We will continue to narrow differences and resolve disputes with others through dialogue and negotiation.
“We will not seek to develop only ourselves or engage in zero sum game,” Jinping said in his pre-recorded video address to the virtual gathering of world leaders.
UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres had earlier in the day, warned against a “new Cold War” between China and the United States, saying the face-off between the two countries was moving the world in “a very dangerous direction”.
“Our world cannot afford a future where the two largest economies split the globe in a great fracture, each with its own trade and financial rules and internet and artificial intelligence capacities.
“A technological and economic divide risks inevitably turning into a geo-strategic and military divide. We must avoid this at all costs,” he said.
Relations between the United States and China – both nuclear-armed countries and veto power holders in the UN Security Council – have deteriorated since 2019.
The Trump administration is accusing China of unfair trade practices, intellectual property theft, and cyber espionage – all of which Beijing has denied.
The situation had triggered a series of economic sanctions including visa restrictions and expulsions by Washington targeting Chinese government officials, companies, diplomats, and students.
China had retaliated in some cases, including the closure of the American consulate.
In his statement earlier at the Assembly, Trump in his characteristic forthrightness, put China on the spot over its handling of the coronavirus pandemic and the environment.
“We must hold accountable the nation which unleashed this plague onto the world: China,” Trump said.
He accused China of dumping “millions and millions of tons of plastic and trash into the oceans and overfishing other countries’ waters”.
“China’s carbon emissions are nearly twice what the United States has, and it’s rising fast.
“Those, who attack America’s exceptional environmental record while ignoring China’s rampant pollution are not interested in the environment.
“They only want to punish America and I will not stand for it,” he said.
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Emmanuel Yashim
Trump says UN must focus on ‘Real Problems’ including terrorism, ethnic cleansing
United States President Donald Trump on Tuesday said the world body must focus on addressing global issues such as terrorism, ethnic cleansing of minority religious groups, trafficking and other problems.
President Trump said in his speech to the UN General Assembly in Washington.
“If the UN is to be an effective organisation it must focus on the real problems of the world,” Trump said during remarks at the White House.
“This includes terrorism, the oppression of women, forced labour, drug trafficking, human and sex trafficking, religious persecution, and the ethnic cleansing of religious minorities.”
Trump also used his UN General Assembly address to call attention to China.
The United States president called on the UN to hold China accountable for failing to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus in the international community.
Trump also said the international community should be prioritising their national interests rather than focusing on pursuing global ambitions.
Moreover, Trump said the United States now had weapons that it had never thought it would have them.
Edited By: Fatima Sule/Sadiya Hamza
Cycling thrown into fresh turmoil with Tour doping investigation
Cycling has been thrown into fresh turmoil after French judicial authorities opened a preliminary investigation into potential doping at Nairo Quintana’s team Arkea-Samsic.
The probe began on Monday, a day after the Tour de France ended in Paris.
Two people had been taken into custody, Marseille prosecutor Dominique Laurens said.
He added that the probe was targeting a “small part of the team” and that those in custody were part of the “close entourage of the main rider”, without naming him.
Arkea-Samsic’s leader on the Tour was Colombian Quintana, a two-time runner-up, and Vuelta and Giro d’Italia champion.
He finished 17th overall on this year’s Tour.
The French team confirmed their hotel in Meribel was searched by the OCLAESP, the Central Office for the Fight against Environmental and Public Health Damage, after last Wednesday’s 17th stage.
Laurens said the search had resulted in the “discovery of many health products, including drugs and especially a method that can be qualified as doping”.
A source with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters that a “saline solution” and “injection material” had been found.
Injection material can only be in possession of doctors as per the `no needle policy’ in place in cycling since 2011.
Arkea-Samsic team manager Emmanuel Hubert said on Monday that the investigation did “not target the team or its staff directly.
Quintana was allowed to continue working with his own doctor when he signed a three-year deal with Arkea-Samsic this year.
Quintana’s management have not responded to a Reuters request for comment.
This year’s Tour was won by Slovenian Tadej Pogacar, who produced one of the most stunning performances in recent history in the final time trial last Saturday.
The 22-year-old is with Team UAE Emirates.
It is managed by Mauro Gianetti and Matxin Fernandez, sports directors at Saunier Duval in 2008 when the team left the Tour in the wake of Ricardo Ricco’s failed doping test.
The duo were also managing the Geox-TMC team when Spaniard Juan Jose Cobo won the Vuelta in 2011.
He was however stripped of the title because of a “violation of the anti-doping rules (use of a banned substance) based on irregularities found in his Athlete Biological Passport in 2009 and 2011”.
“I am too young to remember that era,” said Pogacar when asked about his entourage at UAE Emirates.
“I was 10 in 2008 and it’s weird to be talking about this because it goes against everything I believe in.”
The last notable rider to fail a doping test on the Tour was Luxembourg’s Frank Schleck in 2012.
Edited By: Olawale Alabi)