The Growing Alignment Between the Gulf and the Eastern Mediterranean

The synergies between the Gulf and the eastern Mediterranean theaters have grown substantially in recent years. Speaking at a meeting in Paphos, Cyprus in mid-April 2021 with his counterparts from Greece and Israel, as well as the former minister of state for foreign affairs of the UAE (now an advisor to the UAE president), the Cypriot foreign minister noted, “The evolving web of regional cooperation is creating a new narrative.” A week later, UAE and Israeli fighter jets flew together publicly — for the first time — in an international aerial exercise hosted by Greece. How can we explain the signs of growing cooperation between these actors that seemingly operate in close but not completely overlapping arenas?

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