UAE: Israel issues first passport to baby of citizen born in Emirates

The countries recently celebrated the second anniversary of the Abraham Accords


Nasreen Abdulla

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Photo: Twitter
Photo: Twitter

Published: Thu 17 Nov 2022, 8:08 PM

The Embassy of Israel has begun issuing passports to children its citizens born in the UAE. This was announced by Amir Hayek, the first Israeli Ambassador to the country, in a tweet on Thursday evening.

“Another exciting moment. Issuing the first Israeli passport for an Israeli baby born in the United Arab Emirates,” he tweeted, along with a photo of him holding up the little baby who had been issued the passport.

The move was welcomed by Emirati writer Hassan Sajwani. He tweeted: "What a day !! I never thought this could be possible ! First ever Israeli passport issued in the UAE to a baby born in the emirates thank you #AbrahamAccords…thank you President Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed."

The news comes just months after the second anniversary of the Abraham Accords. The agreement was signed by UAE and Israel in September 2020, making the UAE the first Arab country to normalise relations with Israel since Jordan in 1994. The official Israeli embassy in the UAE was opened in June 2021, while the UAE opened it embassy in Tel Aviv in July.

Last year, the Israel’s Consul-General in Dubai lan Sztulman Starosta’s daughter Mia became the first Israeli baby to be ever born in the UAE. At the time, Sztulman had said in an interview with Khaleej Times that he was excited to be in a historic moment. “There have been other Jewish newborns, but she's the first newborn of an Israeli diplomat here in Dubai,” he said.

“Having a baby born here in a hospital like anybody else is symbolic of the closer relationship the two countries are building.”

In September this year, in an exclusive interview with Khaleej Times, Hayek had said that an estimated 450,000 Israeli tourists visited the UAE during the past two years and thousands of Emirati tourists have been welcomed to Israel.

“I am happy with the figures, and this is just the beginning. Tourism is one the most important tools to create people-to-people relations. I am hopeful that more people from both nations will be visiting to get to know each other and learn about each other’s culture,” he said.

The same month, Abu Dhabi hosted the biggest Jewish wedding ever held in the UAE. In the ceremony, New Yorker Rabbi Levi Duchman married Belgian Lea Hadad, in the presence of their friends and family. The Jewish community in the UAE has grown to over 5000 people in the last few years.

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