MAY 19, 2024 JLM 84°F 02:53 PM 07:53 AM EST
Israel, US deny Saudi Arabia suspended normalization talks

Riyadh reportedly asked Washington to freeze negotiations over the Netanyahu government's stance on concessions to the Palestinians.

Israeli and U.S. officials on Monday rejected a report that Riyadh had frozen normalization talks, according to Bloomberg News.

A senior U.S. official called Saturday’s reporting by the Elaph online news site false, echoing earlier remarks by an aide to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu aboard a plane carrying the Israeli prime minister to the United States for meetings in California and New York, including with President Joe Biden on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly on Wednesday.

According to the London-based Arabic-language media outlet, which is owned by Saudi businessman Othman al-Omeir, who reportedly is close to Saudi Arabia’s King Salman, an official in Netanyahu’s office said that Riyadh had told the Americans to halt any negotiations over normalization with Israel over its hardline government’s refusal to make any gestures toward the Palestinians.

A Palestinian source told Israel’s Channel 13 that the Saudis are not satisfied with the media coverage of the discussions and were seeking to slow down the talks on potentially joining the Abraham Accords, saying that the negotiations are “progressing too quickly.”

The Arab source said that the Saudis wanted clarification from the Americans on what measures the Israeli government would be willing to take in favor of the Palestinians.

The White House confirmed the Biden-Netanyahu meeting on Friday, with U.S. National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan saying that the two leaders would “discuss a range of bilateral and regional issues focused on the shared democratic values between the United States and Israel and a vision for a more stable and prosperous and integrated region, as well as to compare notes on effectively countering and deterring Iran.”

Sullivan said on Sept. 8 that “many of the elements of a path to normalization are now on the table” in regards to a U.S.-brokered deal between Jerusalem and Riyadh.

“We don’t have a framework and we don’t have the terms ready for signing, there is still work to be done,” Sullivan told reporters, adding that there was a “broad understanding of many of the key elements.”

Last month, Israel’s Foreign Minister Eli Cohen conveyed that the Palestinian issue will not be an obstacle to normalizing relations with Saudi Arabia.

“The current Israeli government will take steps to improve the Palestinian economy,” Cohen stated in an interview with Elaph, amid reports that one of Riyadh’s demands for a U.S.-brokered deal to join the Abraham Accords involves concessions to the Palestinians.

Image - Reuters

Did you find this article interesting?
[Anonymous] 15:31 18.09.2023
The world needs to stop giving to Palestinians and maybe they can learn how to support themselves.
[Anonymous] 15:30 18.09.2023
No concessions for “Palestinians.” Are you kidding me? That’s the worst possible thing you can do for your people and your country.
Bernard Baum 14:41 18.09.2023
UNESCO determining a place is of Palestinian historical existence is not worth the lying corrupt obfuscating underlying false “facts”on which it is based, voted upon by Arab usurpers in the UN
Bernard Baum 14:38 18.09.2023
Concessions should not be , as now, a one way street flowing from Israel to the Palestinians . One thing is prove their historical existence in the so called West Bank and ‘from the river to sea “
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