Salman to Trump: Israeli-Palestinian Peace, then Ties
Saudi Arabian King Salman bin Abdulaziz has told US President Donald Trump that there will have to be peace between Israel and the Palestinians before Riyadh normalizes ties with the Jewish state. The official Saudi news agency SPA reported on Monday that Salman asserted this to Trump during a phone call the day before. On August 13, the Trump Administration announced it had brokered an agreement for Israel and the United Arab Emirates to begin a process of normalization. Abu Dhabi demanded – and received a promise – that Israel would put a plan for West Bank annexations on hold, and since then, the White House has sent top officials, including Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and presidential adviser Jared Kushner, to lobby other Middle Eastern leaders to follow suit. Salman reportedly told Trump that Saudi Arabia was sticking to the demands of a 2002 peace initiative calling for full Arab normalization with Israel on condition that Israel withdraw from all territories it captured in 1967 and a Palestinian state be established, with its capital in Jerusalem.