Normalization with Israel would bring ‘tremendous benefits’ for Middle East: Saudi Foreign Minister

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Riyadh – Any normalization deal between Saudi Arabia and Israel would benefit the Middle-east region, said Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal Bin Farhan on Thursday, but it depends on an independent and sovereign Palestinian state based on 1967 borders.

Addressing an interview on CNN, Prince said, “The normalization of Israel’s status within the region would bring tremendous benefits to the region as a whole. It would be extremely helpful economically, socially and from a security perspective”.

“I don’t know if (a deal is) imminent, it’s very much dependent on progress with the peace process,” Prince Faisal said. “There is, of course, a normalization deal on the table — it has been on the table since 2002; it’s called the Arab peace plan. And even before that we had the Fez initiative, which was presented by the Kingdom in 1982 and puts forward the prospect of full and complete normalization with Israel in return for a just settlement to the Palestinian issue”.

Prince continued that, “Now, normalization in the region can only be successful if we address the issue of the Palestinians and if we are able to deliver a Palestinian state within the 1967 borders that gives the Palestinians dignity and gives them their rights. If we can find a path towards that, then I think we can see a much, much safer region and a much more prosperous one where everybody can contribute to its success, including Israel”.

In August 2020, Saudi Arabia’s brotherly countries UAE and Bahrain signed normalization deals with Israel as part of Abraham Accords facilitated by former US President Donald Trump in Washington.

Later, Sudan and Morocco followed the suit and signed normalization deals with Israel.

In February this year, Prince Faisal said that Saudi Arabia remained committed to the establishment of a Palestinian state, stood with the Palestinian people and supported all efforts to reach a solution.

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