Biden could announce measures on Israel-Saudi Arabia ties, Lapid says

Jerusalem, Jun 15 (EFE).- Measures aimed at normalizing ties between Israel and Saudi Arabia could be announced during an upcoming visit to both countries by United States president Joe Biden, Israel’s foreign minister said on Wednesday.

Biden is to visit Israel, the West Bank and Saudi Arabia during his first Middle Eastern tour scheduled for July 13-16.

“I don’t want to steal the show from the president,” Israel’s top diplomat Yair Lapid said at a press conference adding that upon his arrival, he will announce measures that lead to improving the relations with the kingdom.

He considered that reports by US and Israeli outlets about a potential rapprochement “are not without some base. Everyone is looking at Saudi Arabia these days for a reason.”

“The fact that the president’s going to fly directly from here to Saudi Arabia is probably signifying that there is a linkage between the visit and the ability to improve relations,” Lapid said.

There is a possibility that economic memorandums are to be signed during Biden’s visit and that Saudi Arabia opens its airspace to Israeli airlines, media has reported.

Israel has never hidden its desire to expand the Abraham Accords — which normalized Israel’s relations with the UAE, Bahrain and Morocco in 2020 — with Riyadh on top of the list.

Saudi Arabia — a traditional supporter of the Palestinian cause — continues to make full political ties with Israel subject to the creation of a Palestinian state.

They both, however, share its enmity with Iran and fear of the expansion of its nuclear program. EFE


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