An Analysis of Recent Saudi Statement about Normalization of Relations with the Zionist Regime

Strategic Council Online - Interview: An expert on Middle East affairs says Saudi Arabia's recent statement stands for two issues, which indicates Riyadh’s compliance with US policies. The first issue is that Saudi Arabia has supported the two-state plan with Washington’s backing. In contrast, the Palestinians and Resistance Axis countries have strong reservations about the two-state scheme.

In an interview with the website of the Strategic Council on Foreign Relations, Jafar Qanadabashi said: Saudi Arabia’s statement includes two issues that indicate the country’s alignment with American policies: First, Saudi Arabia has approved the two-state policy, which is a plan supported by the United States. At the same time, the Palestinians and the Resistance Axis countries have strong reservations about it. He continued: Secondly, this statement tries to portray the issue of normalization between Saudi Arabia and Israel as a done deal.

Referring to the dangers and implications of this Saudi position, Qanadbashi said: Saudi Arabia is one of the prominent Arab countries and an important member of the Arab League, and this position on behalf of Riyadh is an attempt to revive the reconciliation policy with the Zionist regime. After the Operation Al-Aqsa Storm, analysts maintained that recognition of the Zionist regime had been postponed and restoration of relations with Israel was out of the question for the time being. They also believed that compromise plans had reached a dead-end, but the latest statement issued by Riyadh shows the opposite!

Qanadabashi said: This statement was published while the international organizations and The Hague Court considered the actions of the Zionist authorities in Gaza tantamount to genocide. While the public opinion of the world is against the criminal Israeli actions in Gaza, Saudi Arabia’s action in publishing the statement shows that Riyadh still follows the policy of accompanying the West and its anti-Brotherhood approach because it believes that Hamas is a branch of the Muslim Brotherhood; interestingly there is no mention of Gaza in the  Saudi statement.

About the approach of the US and Israel vis-a-vis the Saudi statement and the possible reaction of Tel Aviv, he said: They agree with this Saudi approach because this statement is aimed at serious cooperation with the West and in line with the support for the two-state plan and the normalization of relations with Israel. For a long time, Saudi Arabia has been seriously involved with Israel in such fields of economic and political cooperation, and even in the last one or two months, to neutralize Yemeni attacks against ships destined for ports of the Occupied Territories. Israel has created a channel through UAE and Jordan that supplies the goods needed by the Israeli regime through this route. Therefore, the cooperation between the two sides is more than what we hear in the media, as Saudi airspace is also open to Israeli planes.

This expert on Middle East issues also talked about the Israeli regime’s approach to the two-state plan: The Israelis are against this plan, of course, considering the status quo; they may not express their opinion transparently. And by accepting negotiations in this regard, they want to deceive the Palestinians in one way or another. But based on their general strategy, this plan is unacceptable to them. In fact, they want to occupy the entire land of Palestine, and they will not accept this plan in any way.

Qanadbashi, in response to a question as to why the issue of allowing enrichment in its oil, which he mentioned before, was not raised in the Saudi statement, stated: Considering that Saudi Arabia is accused of cooperating with the Westerners and failing to treat the Palestinians, in this statement it has tried not to express its real position openly to reduce the pressure of public opinion.

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