1. Pan from Rabbi Abraham Cooper holding candle to group of visitors from Bahrain (English) UPSOUND "We are so proud and so grateful that the group came despite all the hullabaloo of the last few days."
2. Cooper speaking to group at candle lighting ceremony
3. Close of candle
4. Pull out of Cooper lighting candle
5. SOUNDBITE (English) Betsy Mathieson, president, "This is Bahrain"
"We're thrilled to be here in this beautiful city of Jerusalem. We've been so warmly received and we've been visiting the holy sites and making new friends and sharing our message of peaceful coexistence."
6. Group member lighting candle
7. Close of candle
8. Another group member lighting candle
9. SOUNDBITE (English) Betsy Mathieson, president, "This is Bahrain"
"People have been asking us, 'Oh why are you here now after there was an announcement that was made by the White House?' The thing is, as I said, we have nothing to do with politics. And if every time somewhere in the world a politician or a leader made a political announcement, or there was a new governmental issue, we would never get any of our work done. So you know, political things can change in a heartbeat, but what will not change is the message of This is Bahrain, and our message is one of peaceful coexistence. So we can't allow world leaders or politics to derail our mission."
10. Group members lighting candles
11. SOUNDBITE (English) Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associated dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center:
"I think that most observers here, in the days leading up to their arrival, assumed that there would be a postponement or a cancellation. That they came speaks volumes."
12. Pan left of group members watching Rabbi Abraham Cooper sing
13. SOUNDBITE (English) Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associated dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center:
"We're looking for the normalisation. We're not waiting for politicians, and we're going to try to stick to that narrative and we give them tremendous credit."
14. Various of group members around dining table at ceremony
An interfaith group from the Gulf state of Bahrain has paid an unprecedented public visit to Israel.
The group says the visit is not political but it has still angered many in the Arab world.
"We are so proud and so grateful that the group came despite all the hullabaloo of the last few days". Those are the words of Rabbi Abraham Cooper from the US-based Jewish human rights group, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, as he welcomes an interfaith group from the Gulf state of Bahrain to an event in Jerusalem.
The hullabaloo he refers to is last week's announcement by Donald Trump that the US will recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel - and the violence that followed that seismic shift in policy.
The group from the Gulf flew to Israel on Sunday as guests of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, in an unprecedented public visit which has generated uproar across the Arab world.
The trip comes at a time that Israel is boasting of warming, albeit covert, ties with moderate Arab countries in a shared front against archrival Iran. But the heavy criticism toward the group unleashed on Arab social media, along with the low profile they have taken, shows the limits on how far that goodwill can go.
The 25 participants include Buddhists, Christians, Hindus, Sikhs, and both Sunni and Shiite Muslims. While organisers and participants say the trip is non-political and unconnected to the government, it nonetheless is a possible test case for other Gulf Arab nations in seeing what could happen if they recognise Israel.
"People have been asking us, 'Oh why are you here now after there was an announcement that was made by the White House?' says Betsy Mathieson, President of This is Bahrain.
"We have nothing to do with politics," Matheison insists. "And if every time somewhere in the world a politician or a leader made a political announcement, or there was a new governmental issue, we would never get any of our work done."
But the early results seem decidedly mixed.
Shortly after the group arrived, it was forced to issue a statement on the state-run Bahrain News Agency that it "does not represent any official entity" in Bahrain after uproar on social media. People were especially angry that the visit came so close to President Donald Trump's comments.
The US President's statement has enraged Palestinians, who seek the city's eastern half as capital of a future state.
Throughout their time in Israel, the group has avoided the spotlight. Several Bahraini citizens in the group chose not to attend a dinner alongside the walls of Jerusalem's Old City to light candles for the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah on Tuesday. The few Bahrainis who did attend either refused to speak to The Associated Press or did so only if they were not identified.
Roughly half of the members of This is Bahrain that took part in the trip were Bahraini citizens. Israel and Bahrain do not have diplomatic relations, although the two are rumoured to be nurturing close covert ties. Israel's Interior Ministry said the participants entered the country legally after their arrival was coordinated in advance with Israeli authorities with the assistance of the Simon Wiesenthal Center.
Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says the fact that the group arrived, defying expectations they would cancel because of Trump's statement, "speaks volumes."
"We're looking for the normalisation. We're not waiting for politicians, and we're going to try to stick to that narrative," he says.
Bahrain and other Sunni Arab states see themselves as sharing regional interests with Israel when confronting Shiite power Iran. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has repeatedly touted Israel's warming ties with Gulf Arab states in recent months. On Sunday, Netanyahu asserted that "many of the Arab countries now recognise that Israel is not their enemy but their indispensable ally." This shift, he said, "could help pave the way to an ultimate peace between us and our Palestinian neighbours and between us and the rest of the Arab world."
Netanyahu acknowledged last week that Israel won't be able to sign peace treaties with Arab countries without a deal with the Palestinians, but also implied that ties have already been established and have plenty of room to grow. "Peace treaties, no. Everything else below that, yes, and it's happening," he said just hours before Trump's declaration on Jerusalem.
The island nation of Bahrain, east of Saudi Arabia in the Persian Gulf, has long been seen as more liberal than its larger neighbour, but has faced major criticism in recent years for how it put down its 2011 Arab Spring protests with the help of the Saudi kingdom and the United Arab Emirates.
The tiny state is ruled by a Sunni king but has a majority Shiite population. According to the Bahraini government, 70 per cent of the population is Muslim and the remainder adheres to various faiths.
Shiites and others demonstrated in 2011 seeking more political freedoms. An official investigation found the government demolished 30 Shiite religious structures following the demonstrations, ranging from mosques to meeting halls and shrines, as part of a broader crackdown on dissent.
Bahrain is home to a small Jewish community, but no members of the community took part in the trip.