TOI reports that Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi on Wednesday accused regional rival Saudi Arabia of betraying the Palestinians by discussing the normalization of relations with Israel.
“The initiation of a relationship between the Zionist regime and any country in the region, if it is with the aim to bring security for the Zionist regime, will certainly not do so,” Raisi told a news conference as he attended the UN General Assembly in New York.
“We believe that a relationship between regional countries and the Zionist regime would be a stab in the back of the Palestinian people and of the resistance of the Palestinians,” he said.
Raisi also warned against an Israel-Saudi normalization deal on Monday, saying, “The normalization of relations with the Zionist regime does not create security.”
The US has been looking to broker a normalization deal between Saudi Arabia and Israel, a goal long sought by Jerusalem that could have a dramatic impact in the Middle East. Israel has already normalized relations with the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Morocco, Egypt and Jordan.
Saudi Arabia and Israel have bonded in part over shared hostility to Iran’s clerical state, although Riyadh has moved to ease tensions with Tehran through talks brokered by China.
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman said Wednesday that “every day we get closer” to Saudi Arabia normalizing ties with Israel, while clarifying that the Palestinian issue is still a “very important” component of the process.
The comments represented rare public remarks in English by bin Salman regarding the normalization effort, offering an additional degree of optimism regarding its chances, hours after US President Joe Biden and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu discussed the issue during a meeting on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.
Source - TOI/X - Image - Reuters