Saudi Arabia, Israel Moving Closer to Normalization, MBS Prince Says
- Middle East Eye
Saudi Arabia – Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) conveyed on Wednesday that Saudi Arabia is moving closer every day to normalize ties with Israel while clarifying that the Palestinian issue is a very important component of the process.
"Every day we are getting closer (to signing the normalization agreement with Israel," Prince MBS said in an interview with Fox News airing on Wednesday.
A conservative United States (US) television network interviewed the son of King Salman bin Abdulaziz al-Saud to discuss the diplomatic relationship brokered by Joe Biden. This is because Saudi Arabia and Israel are close allies of the United States.
Meanwhile, Israel itself is a Zionist state that has colonized Palestine in the last few years. In fact, Palestine is an Arab country with a Muslim majority like Saudi Arabia and other Muslim-populated countries.
"For us, the Palestinian issue is very important. We have to solve this problem. And we have a good negotiation strategy to date," said the de facto leader of Saudi Arabia when asked what would be sought in a normalization deal with Israel.
In the interview, Prince Mohammed bin Salman who spoke in English, said, "We are looking at where this is going. We hope it will get to a place that will make life easier for the Palestinians and for Israel to be a player in the Middle East.
Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia has also often touted Palestinian independence from decades of Israeli occupation. This is one of the conditions that must be fulfilled if Israel wants to establish relations with them.
Israel has normalized diplomatic relations with five Arab countries. However, recognition by Saudi Arabia will be considered a historic moment in the Middle East. This is because Saudi Arabia is considered a country that guards the Holy Cities of Muslims, Mecca, and Medina.
Moreover, if Israel and Saudi Arabia officially establish diplomatic relations, controversy will not only happen on the Saudi side and the Islamic world, but it will also be a problem for the US, which often discusses human rights issues.