ISLAMABAD           -       Pakistan on Friday said it wanted the right to self-determination for the Palestinian people as the United Arab Emirates and Israel signed a US-brokered peace deal.

A foreign ministry statement said: “We have noted the Joint Statement announcing agreement of UAE and Israel to have full normalisation of relations. This is a development with far-reaching implications.”

Pakistan, it said, has an “abiding commitment to the full realisation of the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people, including the right to self-determination. Peace and stability in the Middle East region is also Pakistan’s key priority.”

It added: “For a just, comprehensive and lasting peace, Pakistan has consistently supported a two-state solution in accordance with the relevant UN and OIC (Organization of Islamic Cooperation) resolutions as well as international law.”

Pakistan’s approach, it said, “will be guided by our evaluation of how Palestinians’ rights and aspirations are upheld and how regional peace, security and stability are preserved.”

Earlier, the UAE and Israel reached an agreement-brokered by the US - to work towards a “full normalisation of relations,” a deal the Palestinians called a “treacherous stab in the back.” Under the agreement announced by US President Donald Trump, Israel said it has agreed to “delay” the annexation of Palestinian lands in the occupied West Bank, but the plan “remains on table.”

The UAE is the first Gulf Arab state and the third Arab nation- after Egypt and Jordan - to announce active ties with Israel. The surprise deal was the product of lengthy discussions between Israel, the UAE and the US that accelerated recently, the White House said.

A joint Israel-UAE statement was also tweeted out by Trump, who called the deal a “huge breakthrough.”

The agreement came after a phone call between Trump, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, crown prince of Abu Dhabi.

“This historic diplomatic breakthrough will advance peace in the Middle East region and is a testament to the bold diplomacy and vision of the three leaders and the courage of the United Arab Emirates and Israel to chart a new path that will unlock the great potential in the region,” said the joint statement.

Delegations from Israel and the UAE would meet in coming weeks to sign bilateral agreements on investment, tourism, direct flights, security, telecommunications and other issues, the statement said.

Trump said he hoped other Muslim nations in the region will follow the UAE. “Now that the ice has been broken, I expect more Arab and Muslim countries will follow the United Arab Emirates,” he said.

The Palestinian groups slammed the Israel-UAE agreement, saying it does nothing to serve the Palestinian cause and ignores the rights of the Palestinian people. Hamas condemned the deal, which it said was a “treacherous stab in the back”.

“This agreement does not absolutely serve the Palestinian cause. It rather serves the Zionist narrative. This agreement encourages the occupation (Israel) to continue its denial of the rights of our Palestinian people, and even to continue its crimes against our people,” Hamas spokesperson Hazem Qassem said in a statement. The Fatah Movement said the UAE was “flouting its national, religious and humanitarian duties” toward the Palestinian cause.

Hanan Ashrawi, a member of the Palestinian Liberation Organization’s executive committee, said the UAE had “come out in the open on its secret dealings” with Israel. “Israel got rewarded for not declaring openly what it’s been doing to Palestine illegally and persistently since the beginning of the occupation,” she posted on Twitter.