JERUSALEM, Sept. 18 (Xinhua) -- Israel's cabinet approved Sunday the establishment of an annual gathering of senior officials from the United States and five Middle Eastern countries, namely Israel, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain, Morocco and Egypt.
The decision "institutionalizes" the work of the Negev Forum, a six-party meeting held in Sde Boker in southern Israel's Negev Desert in March 2022, said a statement issued by Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid's office.
The Negev Forum will act on the basis of six working multilateral groups in the fields of food security and water, energy, tourism, health, education and tolerance, and regional security, the office said.
Among the four Arab countries in the forum, the UAE, Bahrain and Morocco normalized ties with Israel in 2020, while Egypt was the first Arab country to sign a peace accord with Israel in 1979. ■