Saudis Agree with U.S. on Path to Normalize Kingdom's Ties with Israel

(Wall Street Journal) Dion Nissenbaum - The U.S. and Saudi Arabia have agreed on the broad contours of a deal for Saudi Arabia to recognize Israel in exchange for concessions to the Palestinians, U.S. security guarantees and civilian nuclear help, according to U.S. officials. U.S. officials expressed cautious optimism that, in the next nine to 12 months, they can hammer out the details of a Middle East peace deal but warned that they face long odds. President Biden's focus on the deal is a reflection of his view that America has to remain a central player in the Middle East to contain Iran, isolate Russia, and thwart efforts by China to supplant Washington in the region. On Wednesday, National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said that negotiators still had a long way to go. "There is no agreed-to set of negotiations, there's no agreed-to framework to codify the normalization or any of the other security considerations that we and our friends have in the region." Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has told aides that he isn't ready to establish full diplomatic relations with Israel. Israeli national security adviser Tzachi Hanegbi said negotiators have yet to float specific ideas with Israeli leaders. "At the moment, we don't even know where to begin. They are still dealing with basic issues between them. So apparently it's premature even for them to discuss it."

2023-08-10 00:00:00

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