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Another country ‘could’ join Israel-UAE deal – Trump

US President Donald Trump says it is likely another country will soon join a diplomatic accord between Israel and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Mr. Trump is expected to host a signing ceremony on Tuesday, September 15, which will include delegations from Israel and the UAE. His envoys, led by senior White House adviser, Jared Kushner, have been trying to coax other Gulf nations, such as Bahrain and Oman, to join in normalising relations with the Jewish state.

Last month, Israel and the UAE agreed to normalise ties in a deal that the US president helped orchestrate.

“Next week at the White House we’ll be having a signing between the UAE and Israel, and we could have another country added into that. And I will tell you that countries are lining up that want to go into it,” Mr. Trump told a White House news conference on Thursday.

The Republican president, who is seeking re-election on November 3, did not disclose the name of the country that might be the next to join, but predicted that Saudi Arabia would eventually do so.

The Saudi Embassy in Washington has not yet said whether the Saudi ambassador or another Saudi representative will be attending next week’s signing ceremony at the White House.

Mr. Trump said he believed the Palestinians, who have denounced his Middle East peace initiative as too favorable to Israel, would ultimately “get back into the fold” and open a dialogue.

He added that the US would consider lifting a freeze on aid to the Palestinians if a deal can be reached with them.

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