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Israel, UAE, Bahrain Sign Historic Peace Accord At White House. Aired 1-1:30p ET

Aired September 15, 2020 - 13:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


[13:00:00]

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The people of the Middle East will no longer allow hatred of Israel to be fomented as an excuse for radicalism or extremism, so important. And they'll no longer allow the great destiny of their region to be denied.

On my first foreign trip as president, I had the honor of addressing the leaders of more than 54 Arab and Muslim nations in Saudi Arabia. My message that day was very simple. I urged the nations of the Middle East to set aside their differences, unite against the common enemy of civilization and work together toward the noble aims of security and prosperity.

I offered America's friendship, I offered America's help but I said clearly that the nations of the regions had to decide what kind of a future they wanted for their children and for their families and for their nation itself. No one could make that choice for them. They had to do that themselves.

Today, the world sees that they're choosing cooperation over conflict, friendship over enmity, prosperity over poverty and hope over despair. They are choosing a future in which Arabs and Israelis, Muslims, Jews and Christians can live together, pray together and dream together side by side in harmony, community and peace.

Once again, let me congratulate the people of Israel, the people of the United Arab Emirates and the people of the Kingdom of Bahrain. God bless you all. This is an incredible day for the world. This is a really wonderful and beautiful occasion.

I want to thank all of the members of Congress for being here, senators, congressmen, congresswomen, we just appreciate it so much. Everybody wanted to be here. It's a very important day for the world. It is a very important day for peace.

Before the parties sign the accords, I'd like to ask Prime Minister Netanyahu to say a few words followed by the foreign minister of the United Arab Emirates and the foreign minister of Bahrain. Thank you very much. It's a great honor. Thank you.

BENJAMIN NETANYAHU, ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER: Our dear friend, President Trump, First Lady Melania Trump, thank you for hosting me, my wife, Sarah, and our entire delegation on this historic day. I want to recognize Vice President Pence, Secretary Pompeo, National Security Adviser O'Brien and other cabinet members, Jared Kushner, Avi Berkowitz, Ambassador Friedman and other members of the president's able peace team, senators, members of Congress, Israeli Ambassador Ron Dermer, his Emirate and Khomeini (ph) counterparts, as well as all the dignitaries gathered here on this sunny day.

I want to also express my gratitude for all Israelis who worked for years, sometimes in less sunny climbs to bring this day and I thank each and every one of you. Thank you.

Ladies and gentlemen, Mr. President, this day is a pivot of history. It heralds a new dawn of peace. For thousands of years, the Jewish people have prayed for peace. For decades, the Jewish state has prayed for peace. And this is why today, we're filled with such profound gratitude.

I am grateful to you, President Trump, for your decisive leadership. You have unequivocally stood by Israel's side. You have boldly confronted the tyrants of Tehran. You have proposed a realistic vision for peace between Israel and the Palestinians. And you have successfully brokered this historic peace that we are signing today, a peace that had broad support in Israel, in America, in the Middle East, indeed, in the entire world.

I am grateful to Crown Price Mohammed bin Zayed of the United Arab Emirates and to you, Foreign Minister Abdullah bin Zayed.

[13:05:06]

I thank you both for your wise leadership and for working with the United States and Israel to expand the circle of peace. I am grateful -- I am grateful to King Hamad of Bahrain and to you, Foreign Minister Abdullatif al Zayani, for joining us, joining us in bringing hope to all the children of Abraham.

To all of Israel's friends in the Middle East, those who are with us today and those who will join us tomorrow, I say, as-salamu alaykum, peace unto thee. Shalom.

And you heard from the president that he is already lining up more and more countries. This is unimaginable a few years ago. But with resolve, determination, a fresh look at the way peace is done, this is being achieved. Thank you, Mr. President.

Ladies and gentlemen, the people of Israel well know the price of war. I know the price of war. I was wounded in battle. A fellow soldier, a very close friend of mine, died in my arms. My brother, Yoni, lost his life while leading his soldiers to rescue hostages held by terrorists at Entebbe.

My parents' grief over the loss of Yoni, who was unrelieved until their dying day. And over the years, when I have come to console the families of Israel's fallen soldiers and victims of terror, I have seen that same grief countless times. And this is why I am so deeply moved to be here today. For those who bear the wounds of war, cherish the blessings of peace. And the blessings of the peace we make today will be enormous. First, because this peace will eventually expand to include other Arab states and, ultimately, it can end the Arab/Israeli conflict once and for all.

Second, because the great economic benefits of our partnership will be felt throughout our region and they will reach every one of our citizens.

And third, because this is not only a peace between leaders, it's a peace between peoples. Israelis and Emiratis and Bahrainis are already embracing. We are eager to invest in a future of partnership prosperity and peace. We have already begun to cooperate on combating corona and I'm sure that together we can find solutions to the problems that afflict our region and beyond.

So, despite the many challenges and hardships that we all face, despite all that, let us pause for a moment to appreciate this remarkable day. Let us rise above any political divide. Let us put all cynicism aside. Let us feel on this day the pulse of history. For long after the pandemic has gone, the peace we make today will endure.

Ladies and gentlemen, I have devoted my life to securing Israel's place among the nations, to ensure the future of the one and only Jewish state. To accomplish that goal, I work to make Israel strong, very strong.

[13:10:02]

For history has taught us that strength brings security, strength brings allies and, ultimately, and this is something President Trump has said again and again, ultimately, strength brings peace.

King David expressed this basic truth thousands of years ago in our eternal capital, Jerusalem. His prayer immortalized in the book of Psalms in the bible echoes from our glorious past and guides us towards a brilliant future. (INAUDIBLE), may God give strength to his people, may God bless his people with peace.

Mr. President, distinguished guests, this week is Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year. And what a blessing we bring to this new year, a blessing of friendship, a blessing of hope, a blessing of peace. Thank you.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ladies and gentlemen, his highness, the minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of the United Arab Emirates.

SHEIKH ABDULLAH BIN ZAYED AL-NAHYAN, FOREIGN MINISTER, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES: Mr. President, Mr. Prime Minister, and my friend, Abdullatif Al Zayani, distinguished guests, (INAUDIBLE).

Let me start by conveying the best regards of the UAE people and the leadership, and especially (INAUDIBLE) to you, Mr. President, and everyone gathered here today.

I'll continue my speech in Arabic and I'm sure there will be translation to that.

(INAUDIBLE).

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I stand here today to extend a hand of peace and receive a hand of peace. In our faith, we say oh God you are peace and from you comes peace. The search for peace is an innate principle yet principles are effectively realized when they are transformed into action.

Today, we are already witnessing a change in the heart of the Middle East, a change that will send hope around the world.

AL-NAHYAN: (INAUDIBLE).

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This initiative would not have been possible without the efforts of his excellency, President Donald Trump, and his team who worked hard and sincerely for us all to reach here, most notably, my counterpart, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, and Jared Kushner, senior adviser to the president of the United States, and all those who are genuine about the principle of peace in the United States who have strived to realize this major achievement, thank you.

AL-NAHYAN: (INAUDIBLE).

[13:15:00]

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Your Excellency, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, prime minister of the state of Israel, thank you for choosing peace and for halting the annexation of Palestinian territories, a decision that reinforces our shared will to achieve a better future for generations to come.

AL-NAHYAN: (INAUDIBLE).

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ladies and gentlemen, we are witnessing today a new trend that will create a better path for the Middle East. This peace accord, which is a historic achievement for the United States of America, the state of Israel and the United Arab Emirates, will continue to have a positive impact as we believe that its reverberations will be reflected on the every region.

Every option other than peace would signify destruction, poverty and human suffering. This new vision, which is beginning to take shape as we meet today for the future of the region full of youthful energy, is not a slogan that we raise for political gain as everyone looks forward to creating a more stable, prosperous and secure future.

AL-NAHYAN: (INAUDIBLE).

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: At a time when science is prevailing, the region's youth are looking forward to taking part in this great humanitarian movement. We are pleased that the United Arab Emirates will be part of the momentum towards stability and the growth of human potential in a new, civilized approach that opens wide the doors of opportunity for those who look forward towards peace, prosperity and the future. Our societies today possess the foundation of modern human development, such as infrastructure, a solid economy and scientific achievements that will enable them to advance the future of the Middle East.

AL-NAHYAN: (INAUDIBLE).

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The United Arab Emirates believes that the role of the United States in the Middle East is positive and this belief is evidenced by the accord that we are signing today at the White House for which you have taken the lead and will remain a beacon in human history for all peace-loving people around the world.

And as for us in the United Arab Emirates, this accord will enable us to continue to stand by the Palestinian people and realize their hopes for an independent state within a stable and prosperous region. This accord builds upon previous peace agreements signed by Arab nations with the state of Israel. The aim of all these treaties is to work towards stability and sustainable development.

[13:20:00]

AL-NAHYAN: (INAUDIBLE).

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In this difficult year when the world is suffering from the repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic, my country, the United Arab Emirates, has reinforced its humanitarian commitments established by the nation's founding father, Sheikh Zayed, who told us that standing with others regardless of the religious or ethnic affiliation is a humanitarian duty and a firm principle.

AL-NAHYAN: (INAUDIBLE).

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: During this difficult time, the United Arab Emirates, my country, was able to launch a probe to Mars, the Hope Probe, indeed, represents hope that our region is capable of advancement and progress, if governments and people embrace science.

After the United Arab Emirate sent Astronaut Hazzaa Ali Almansoori last year as the first Arab astronaut to reach the International Space Station, and launched a peaceful nuclear power plant, this accord opened up prospects for a comprehensive peace in the region.

AL-NAHYAN: (INAUDIBLE).

Thank you, Mr. President.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ladies and gentlemen, peace requires courage and shaping the future requires knowledge, the advancement of nations requires sincerity and persistence. We have come today to tell the world that this is our approach and that peace is our guiding principle. Those who begin things in the right way will reap ripe achievements with the grace of God. Thank you.

TRUMP: Thank you very much.

AL-NAHYAN: With the grace of God, sir.

TRUMP: Thank you so much. Great job.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ladies and gentlemen, the minister of the foreign affairs of the Kingdom of Bahrain.

ABDULLATIF BIN RASHID AL-ZAYANI, BAHRAINI FOREIGN MINISTER: Mr. President, the first lady, Prime Minister, your highness, ladies and gentlemen, good afternoon.

Today, today is a truly historic occasion, a moment of hope and opportunity for all the peoples of the Middle East, and in particular, for the millions in our younger generations. The declaration supporting peace between the kingdom of Bahrain and the state of Israel is a historic step on the road to genuine and lasting peace, security and prosperity across the region and for all who live there, regardless of religion, sect, ethnicity or ideology.

For too long, the Middle East has been setback by conflict and mistrust, causing untold destruction and thwarting the potential of generations of our best and brightest young people.

[13:25:07]

Now, I'm convinced we have the opportunity to change that. Today's declaration was made possible by the vision, courage and commitment of his majesty, King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa, who, supported by -- supported by the people of Bahrain, has protected, institutionalized and enhanced Bahrain's century's old spirit of coexistence and harmony, and has the wisdom to recognize that genuine cooperation is the most effective means to achieve peace and to safeguard legitimate rights.

Thank you, your majesty, for this vision of peace for the region based on trust, respect and understanding between all faiths, races and nations.

To our brothers in the United Arab Emirates, I congratulate you on your own momentous peace accord being signed today with Israel. His highness, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed, has shown great leadership and foresight to make peace possible and secure a brighter future for our region.

For the state of Israel and Prime Minister Netanyahu, we welcome and appreciate these steps from you and your government, recognizing that enduring peace and security is only possible through a genuine engagement that protects the rights and interests of countries and peoples in the region.

In particular, I want to express my deep appreciation to President Donald Trump and his administration. Mr. President, your statesmanship and tireless efforts have brought us here today and made peace a reality. And to Secretary Pompeo, Senior Adviser Jared Kushner, and Special Representative Avi Berkowitz, who have -- and others, many others, who have carried out their mandates with dedication and skill. Ladies and gentlemen, today's agreement is an important first step and it is now incumbent on us to work urgently and actively to bring about the lasting peace and security our peoples deserve. A just, comprehensive, and enduring two-state solution to the Palestinian/Israeli conflict will be the foundation, the bedrock, of such peace.

We have shown today -- we have shown today that such a path is possible, even realistic. What was only dreamed of a few years ago is now achievable and we can see before us a golden opportunity for peace, security and prosperity for our region. Let us, together and with our international partners, waste no time in seizing it. Thank you.

TRUMP: That's a great job.

AL-ZAYANI: Thank you. Thank you.

TRUMP: You did a great job.

[13:30:00]