Israel hosted the foreign ministers of four Arab nations and the US as signals mount that a 2015 agreement on Iran's nuclear programme will soon be restored.

Israel and some Arab countries worry that an emerging nuclear deal with Iran will leave the Persian power with the means to build a bomb and bolster Tehran-backed militias.
Israel and some Arab countries worry that an emerging nuclear deal with Iran will leave the Persian power with the means to build a bomb and bolster Tehran-backed militias. (Reuters)

The top diplomats of the United States and four Arab countries have convened in Israel in a display of unity against Iran.

Concluding the two days of discussions at a resort in southern Negev Desert, Israel said the event would be repeated and expanded as it builds up commercial and security ties with like-minded Arab states.

"This new architecture - the shared capabilities we are building - intimidates and deters our common enemies, first and foremost Iran and its proxies," Foreign Minister Yair Lapid said alongside his US, Emirati, Bahrani, Moroccan and Egyptian counterparts.

Israel and some Arab countries worry that an emerging nuclear deal with Iran will leave the Persian power with the means to build a bomb and bolster Tehran-backed militias.

Jordan's king, whose government declined to participate in the foreign ministers' meeting, instead visited the Israeli-occupied West Bank in solidarity with the Palestinians.

READ MORE: US, Israel 'committed' to stopping Iran from getting atomic weapons

'Not a substitute for talks with Palestinians'

“Just a few years ago this gathering would have been impossible to imagine,” US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said.

“The United States has and will continue to strongly support a process that is transforming the region and beyond.”

The UAE, Bahrain and Morocco normalised ties with Israel under a 2020 US initiative known as the Abraham Accords. Egypt in 1979 became the first Arab state to make peace with Israel.

While hailing the accords, Blinken added: "We have to be clear that these regional peace agreements are not a substitute for progress between Palestinians and Israelis".

The Arab ministers also repeatedly said it was critical to address decades-old Israel-Palestine conflict.

“We did highlight the importance of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, importance of maintaining the credibility and viability of the two-state solution," said Egypt's Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry.

Israel has settled much of the occupied West Bank and has had Gaza under blockade since June 2007, severely crimpling the economy, health and safety of the Palestinian enclave.

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, who heads a patchwork coalition of parties that have little in common, has said he opposes a Palestinian state and has no intention to restart peace talks.

READ MORE: The Abraham Accords promise peace, just not for Palestinians

Source: TRTWorld and agencies