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Bahrain committed to building relations with Israel, says prominent Rabbi

In a statement to Israel's Jerusalem Post yesterday, Rabbi Marc Scheiner, one of New York's most prominent rabbis, revealed an agreement reached between himself and the Bahraini King Hamad bin Isa Al-Khalifa during one of their meetings in Manama. The agreement concerned the King's promise to work on adding Hezbollah to the Gulf Cooperation Council's (GCC)'s list of terrorist organisations.

Scheiner said that based on the understanding between himself and the King, Bahrain proposed to the rest of the Gulf countries that Hezbollah be added to the GCC's list of terrorist organisations. The proposal was accepted in a GCC meeting in March 2016.

Scheiner told the newspaper, "Since I began working with the king in 2011, he had made it clear his commitment to building relations with Israel. In fact, in our first meeting we agreed that Bahrain and Israel share a common threat – Iran."

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The Rabbi also reported that he would be leading a congregational mission including rabbis and Jewish American figures to Bahrain in early 2018 after receiving an invite from the king of Bahrain. He noted that this is the first time a  rabbi delegation will make a visit of this nature to an Arab country.

The newspaper reported that the mission will visit Israel after its visit to Bahrain, noting the mission's role in coordinating and strengthening ties between Manama and Tel Aviv.

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