Israel to open renewable energy office in Abu Dhabi
Israel “soon” will open an office focused on renewable energy in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates — even though the two nations have no diplomatic relations, an Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman said.
If opened, the office would be the first formal Israeli presence on the Arabian Peninsula in years.
Where that office space will be in the capital remains up in the air, the Abu Dhabi-based International Renewable Energy Agency said, though it confirmed Israel has the right under its charter as a member to work there. Responding to the news, Emirati Foreign Affairs Ministry spokeswoman Maryam Al-Falasi said the possible office opening “does not represent any change in the position of the UAE or its relations with Israel.”
“The functions of missions accredited to IRENA … do not, under any circumstances, cover any other activities and do not involve any obligation upon the host country with regards to its diplomatic relations or any other relations,” al-Falasi said in a statement carried by the state-run WAM news agency.
However, under IRENA’s headquarters agreement, Israel could open an office in Abu Dhabi with the “same privileges and immunities as are accorded to diplomatic missions” in a location approved by the UAE.