Saudi foreign minister introduces new term during Blinken’s briefing to Netanyahu on his conversation with bin Salman.

Axios reported that US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken contacted Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and briefed him on talks with the Saudi Crown Prince that included “normalization”.

Axios reported that the meeting between Blinken and Mohammed bin Salman lasted more than two hours, and that one of the topics discussed was a possible normalization of relations between Saudi Arabia and Israel.

A source familiar with the call said: “Blinken briefed Netanyahu on (the content of) the meeting with Mohammed bin Salman and they discussed the way forward.”

Yesterday, Thursday, the US State Department reported that Blinken and Netanyahu discussed during a telephone conversation the strengthening of Israel’s integration into the Middle East by normalizing relations with the countries of the region.

State Department spokesman Matthew Miller said Blinken “also discussed broader regional issues, such as the threat posed by Iran, and underlined the United States’ unwavering commitment to Israel’s security and our 75-year partnership.”

However, the Israeli statement did not mention a call between the US Secretary of State and the Israeli Prime Minister to Saudi Arabia, and focused on Israeli concerns about a possible “freeze for freeze” deal between the US and Iran.

But Blinken, in a joint press conference with his Saudi counterpart Prince Faisal bin Farhan, refrained from revealing whether the United States would back Riyadh’s nuclear ambitions.

Faisal bin Farhan said he hoped to reach an agreement with the US to support the Kingdom’s efforts to produce nuclear power, adding that the Kingdom believes normalization is in the interests of the region and will greatly benefit everyone.

He continued, “But without finding a path to peace for the Palestinian people and without resolving this issue, any normalization will have limited benefits.”

The Saudi Foreign Minister added that “a way to solve the two-state problem” and “a way to ensure the dignity and justice of the Palestinians” must be found.

According to Axios, the Saudi Foreign Minister’s use of the term “path” is a slight change in the position expressed by the Saudis in the past when they demanded the creation of a Palestinian state as a condition for normalizing relations with Israel.

Source: Axios

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