Saudi Arabia says that there will be no diplomatic relations with Israel without the establishment of an independent Palestinian state

CAIRO (Reuters) – Saudi Arabia told the United States its position is that there will be no diplomatic relations with Israel unless an independent Palestinian state is recognized on the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem and the Israeli “aggression” on the Gaza Strip stops. The Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement on Wednesday.

John Kirby, White House national security spokesman, said on Tuesday that the Biden administration has received positive feedback that Saudi Arabia and Israel want to continue normalization discussions.

The ministry said that the Kingdom issued the statement to confirm its firm position to Washington on the Palestinian issue in light of the statements attributed to Kirby.

The idea of ​​formally strengthening ties between Israel and Saudi Arabia has been under discussion since the Saudis gave their quiet approval for Gulf neighbors the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain to establish relations with Israel in 2020.

Sources familiar with Riyadh’s thinking told Reuters in October 2023 that Saudi Arabia had frozen US-backed plans to normalize relations with Israel, as the war between the Palestinian Hamas movement and Israeli forces escalated.

Israel began its military assault on Gaza after militants from the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip killed 1,200 people and took 253 hostage in southern Israel on October 7.

(Reporting by Enas El Ashry; Editing by Stephen Coates)

(Tags for translation)Saudi Arabia

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