The following is a transcript of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech at Abraham Accord signing ceremony on Sept. 15, 2020 in Washington D.C.
Ladies and gentlemen, Mr. President,
This day is a pivot of history. It heralds a new dawn of peace.
I am grateful to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed of the United Arab Emirates and to you, Foreign Minister Abdullah bin Zayed. I thank you both for your wise leadership and for working with the United States and Israel to expand the circle of peace.
I am grateful to King Hamad of Bahrain and to you, Foreign Minister Abdullatif Al-Zayani, for joining us in bringing hope to all the children of Abraham.
To all of Israel’s friends in the Middle East, those who are with us today and those who will join us tomorrow, I say As-salamu alaykum, peace unto you. Shalom.
And you have heard from the president that he is already lining up more and more countries. This was unimaginable a few years ago, but with resolve, determination, a fresh look at the way peace is done, this is being achieved. Thank you, Mr. President.
And the blessings of the peace we make today will be enormous. First, because this peace will eventually expand to include other Arab states, and ultimately it can end the Arab-Israeli conflict once and for all. Second, because the great economic benefits of our partnership will be felt throughout our region, and they will reach every one of our citizens. And third, because this is not only a peace between leaders, it’s a peace between peoples—Israelis, Emiratis and Bahrainis are already embracing one another. We are eager to invest in a future of partnership, prosperity and peace. We’ve already begun to cooperate on combating corona, and I am sure that together we can find solutions to many of the problems that afflict our region and beyond.
So despite the many challenges and hardships that we all face—despite all that—let us pause for a moment to appreciate this remarkable day. Let us rise above any political divide. Let us put all cynicism aside. Let us feel on this day the pulse of history. For long after the pandemic is gone, the peace we make today will endure.
Ladies and gentlemen, I have devoted my life to securing Israel’s place among the nations, to ensure the future of the one and only Jewish state. To accomplish that goal, I have worked to make Israel strong, very strong, for history has taught us that strength brings security, strength brings allies and ultimately—and this is something President Trump has said again and again—ultimately strength brings peace.
King David expressed this basic truth thousands of years ago in our eternal capital, Jerusalem. His prayer, immortalized in the Book of Psalms in the Bible, echoes from our glorious past and guides us towards a brilliant future:
“May God give strength to his people, may God bless his people with peace.”
Mr. President, distinguished guests, this week is Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year, and what a blessing we bring to this new year, a blessing of friendship, a blessing of hope, a blessing of peace.”