Abu Dhabi, 22nd May: An Emirati plane carrying medical aid for Palestinians landed at an Israeli airport after taking off from Abu Dhabi.
According to Baaghi TV, on May 19 an Emirati plane operated a cargo flight from Abu Dhabi to Tel Aviv to provide medical supplies to the Palestinians, Etihad Airways, the state-owned air carrier, confirmed the flight.
The humanitarian cargo flight marked the first public flight between the two states despite the UAE not having ties with Israel.
However, it is reported that the Palestinian Authority (PA) has rejected the aid shipment from the United Arab Emirates that has arrived at Israel’s Ben Gurion Airport in Tel Aviv.
In a news conference on Thursday, Mai Kaila the Palestinian Health Minister said her country refused to receive the medical aid as the Emirati side ignored to coordinate with them.
“The UAE has not coordinated with us regarding the medical aid, and we reject to receive it without coordination,” said the minister.
“We are a sovereign country, and they should have coordinated with us first.” Israeli authorities asserted that any assistance meant to be sent to the Palestinian people should be coordinated with the PA first.
“Sending them directly to Israel constitutes a cover for normalization,” they added.
Unlike Jordan and Egypt, both of which signed peace treaties with Israel in 1978 and 1994, respectively, other Arab states officially deny having ties with Israel, which has been occupying Palestinian territories for decades.
In recent years, however, several Gulf states such as the UAE, Saudi Arabia, and Oman, have cultivated covert ties with Israel.
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