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Israeli underwear label becomes first brand to shoot campaign in UAE

Model hails campaign as 'historical moment' as UAE-Israel commercial ties strengthen
Israeli and Dubai-based models hold Israel and UAE flags during photo shoot in the desert (Reuters)

An Israeli underwear brand has held a photo shoot in Dubai in what is thought to be the first such campaign since Israel and the United Arab Emirates normalised diplomatic ties last month. 

Fix, an undergarment and pyjama label for young women, shot the launch of their Princess collection on Tuesday with Israeli model May Tager and Dubai-based model Anastasia Bandarenka, who is originally from Russia. 

"I am very excited to be the first Israeli model to shoot for an Israeli brand here,” Tager told Reuters, hailing it as a “historical moment of fashion and politics".

The model said that those with Israeli passports were not yet able to enter the UAE, however she was able to fly out using a European passport. 

Tel-Aviv based modelling agency Yuli Models celebrated the news on Instagram, posting: “History in the making. First Israeli campaign in Dubai starring our one and only May Tager." 

Tager and Bandarenka posed wearing pyjamas and holding pillows while on an inflatable bed in the desert. Jerusalem Post reported on Monday that the campaign would be modest and “appropriate for the place” where it was being shot. 

The two were later pictured raising Israel and UAE flags. 

"The moment that we heard about the normalisation agreement, we thought it would be the most exciting thing to film in Dubai,” Fix producer Noya Yohananoff said. 

Fix’s CEO Anat Bogner said that the underwear brand would be looking to expand out of Israel and open stores in the UAE because “the economy there is very good”. 

Israeli Intelligence Minister Eli Cohen has claimed annual trade between Israel and the UAE would reach $4bn in the next three to five years.

Israeli carrier Israir said on Sunday it had reserved slots for commercial flights from Tel Aviv to the UAE, while the heads of Israel's two biggest banks are set to travel to the UAE later this month.

Palestinians have denounced the normalisation deal, which they say violates a longstanding pan-Arab position that relations with Israel would only be normalised in exchange for a Palestinian state.

This article is available in French on Middle East Eye French edition.