Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman

Saudi Crown Prince: Israel a potential ally but should solve conflict with Palestinians

Prince says Israel must resolve Palestinian statehood quest; says Saudi Arabia conducts 'detailed talks' in hope to reach agreement with Iran in the background of nuclear talks

Reuters |
Updated: 03.03.22, 20:43
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman says Israel was a potential ally of his country.
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  • Speaking to "The Atlantic" and carried by Saudi state media on Thursday Bin Salman said Israel was not an enemy of the Saudis.
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    Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman
    Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman
    Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman
    (Photo: AFP)
    "We do not look at Israel as an enemy but as a potential ally in various interests that we could seek to achieve together. But it should solve its problems with the Palestinians," Prince Mohammed was cited by the state news agency.
    Saudi Arabia, home to Islam's two holiest sites, has conditioned any eventual normalization with Israel on addressing the Palestinians' quest for statehood on territory captured by Israel in the 1967 Six Day War.
    He said the Gulf nation intends to continue "detailed talks" with Iran in order to reach a satisfactory agreement for both, while stressing the need for a strong nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers at talks in Vienna, and that direct talks with Iran would enable reaching "a good situation and mark a bright future" for the region's Sunni Muslim and Shi'ite powers, which have been locked in a rivalry playing out in conflicts across the Middle East.
    His comments come as indirect U.S. - Iran talks in Vienna move closer to reviving a 2015 nuclear pact which curbed Tehran's nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief.
    "We do not want to see a weak nuclear deal because the result will be the same in the end," the prince said.
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    World powers meet in Vienna with Iranian delegation on U.S. return to the 2015 nuclear deal, last April
    World powers meet in Vienna with Iranian delegation on U.S. return to the 2015 nuclear deal, last April
    World powers meet in Vienna with Iranian delegation on U.S. return to the 2015 nuclear deal, last April
    (Photo: Reuters)
    Saudi Arabia's foreign minister said last month the kingdom was looking to schedule a fifth round of talks despite a "lack of substantive progress" so far, and urged Tehran to change its behavior.
    Shared concerns over Iran saw Riyadh's Gulf allies the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain forge ties with Israel in 2020 to create a new regional axis at a time of uncertainty over the commitment of key security ally the United States.
    "We do not look at Israel as an enemy but as a potential ally in various interests that we could seek to achieve together. But it should solve its problems with the Palestinians," Prince Mohammed was cited by the state news agency.
    Saudi Arabia, home to Islam's two holiest sites, has conditioned any eventual normalization with Israel on addressing the Palestinians' quest for statehood on territory captured by Israel in the 1967 Middle East war.
    First published: 20:39, 03.03.22
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