Israel’s former deputy envoy in London to take up role in Abu Dhabi

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Israel’s former deputy envoy in London to take up role in Abu Dhabi

Eitan Na’eh will serve as the interim commissioner of Israel’s official diplomatic centre in the United Arab Emirates

Eitan Na’eh
Eitan Na’eh

Israel’s former deputy ambassador to the UK is to be Jerusalem’s man in Abu Dhabi.

Eitan Na’eh, who left London to become Israeli ambassador to Turkey, will serve as the interim commissioner of Israel’s official diplomatic centre in the United Arab Emirates, which will soon become a fully-fledged embassy.

In 2016 Na’eh swapped tea in Kensington for chai in Ankara during a period of rocky Israeli-Turkish relations, before being expelled by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in 2018, just 18 months after formal diplomatic ties were reinstituted.

At the airport, Na’eh was given an extensive security search in front of the nation’s TV cameras, which Israel’s foreign ministry later said had been designed to “humiliate” their ambassador.

In his role of commissioner in Abu Dhabi, Na’eh will have an expansive remit to oversee new bilateral relations in multiple areas as diverse as security, defence, trade, investment, tourism and culture, after last year’s historic Abraham Accords.

Israeli media reported that Na’eh was expected to arrive in Abu Dhabi this week, adding that Na’eh is the first Israeli to have “full and visible diplomatic status in the United Arab Emirates”.

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