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Biden's Mideast visit has 2 main goals, Palestine not one of them, analysts say

June 28, 2022 at 4:00 pm

US President Joe Biden on May 23, 2022 [David Mareuil/Anadolu Agency]

Palestinian political analysts believe US President Joe Biden has two main goals to achieve from his upcoming visit to the Middle East, however, the Palestinian issue is not one of them, Safa news agency reported.

Biden will begin his visit to the region on 13 July starting in the occupation state of Israel and then head to Bethlehem, in the southern occupied West Bank, where he will meet with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas before he heads to Saudi Arabia where he will attend the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) summit in Riyadh.

Leaders of the UAE, Bahrain, Oman, Kuwait and Qatar, Egypt, Jordan and Iraq will attend the meeting.

Palestinian political analysts Ahmed Rafiq Awad and Husam Al-Dajni agreed in two separate interviews with Safa that Biden’s visit has two main goals; to curb the economic repercussions resulting from the war in Ukraine, and curb the Iranian threat by forming an alliance that includes Israel and Arab countries.

“The visit seeks to serve Israel’s security, integrate it into the region and help it lead the Middle East,” Awad said, explaining that the second goal is to end the shortage in energy supplies, especially in the American market, by pushing Arab oil producers to increase production and keep them away from an alliance with Russia.

READ: Seeking to establish ‘Greater Israel’, US Republicans prohibit creation of Palestinian State

Awad explained that Biden wants to save himself in the midterm elections scheduled for November; “especially as he may lose both chambers of Congress”.

“For us Palestinians, it is not clear if the visit will provide anything tangible,” he added, explaining that Biden is the only American president who does not have a plan to solve the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

“There is no interest in the [Palestinian] issue, not even a formal interest, because the United States does not want to ignite the situation in light of its preoccupation with confronting Russia and China,” he said.

Explaining why the visit between Biden and Abbas is expected to take place in the Christian holy city of Bethelehem and not in the home of the Palestinian Authority,  Ramallah, Awad said the Americans do not want to suggest that the visit is political, but rather has a religious dimension so the Palestinians are not recognised as a clear-cut political bloc.

He stressed that “Israel is the biggest beneficiary of the visit, and remains the most favoured by all American administrations.”

READ: Israel to meet with UAE, Bahrain diplomats ahead of Biden visit