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UAE hits out at Netanyahu for saying Gulf state could help run Gaza

1 min

The United Arab Emirates hit out at Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Saturday after the Israeli leader said the Gulf state could be involved in aiding a future government in Gaza after the war.

Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan © GNP

The United Arab Emirates hit out at Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Saturday after the Israeli leader said the Gulf state could be involved in aiding a future government in Gaza after the war.

The prominent and influential Gulf state, is one of few Arab states with official diplomatic ties to Israel, which it has maintained through Israel's more than six-month war in Gaza, although relations appear to have become frayed.

Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan rebuked Netanyahu in an early morning post on X, saying Abu Dhabi denounced the Israeli leader's comments.

"The UAE stresses that the Israeli prime minister does not have any legal capacity to take this step, and the UAE refuses to be drawn into any plan aimed at providing cover for the Israeli presence in the Gaza Strip," he said in an Arabic post.

Sheikh Abdullah said the UAE would be prepared to support a Palestinian government that met the hopes and aspirations of the Palestinian people, which he said included independence.

In an interview that aired this week, Netanyahu said the UAE, Saudi Arabia and other countries could possibly assist a civilian government with Gazans in the enclave after the war.

Prominent members of Netanyahu's cabinet reject the idea of an independent Palestinian state and Netanyahu has said Israel would need to maintain security control of Gaza after the war.

Palestinians hope to establish an independent state in the occupied West Bank and Gaza, an aspiration the UAE supports.

However, sources have said that Abu Dhabi's relationship with Netanyahu has fractured over the military campaign, with Emirati officials now rarely speaking with him.

The UAE has frequently criticised Israel over the war and the high civilian death toll, though it has asserted that diplomatic ties have allowed it to get aid into the Gaza Strip.

Reporting by Ahmed Tolba and Alexander Cornwell

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