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Saudi Arabia sticks to Arab Initiative in drive for ties with Israel

Saudi Arabia's former intelligence minister Prince Turki al-Faisal bin Abdulziz al-Saud [FAYEZ NURELDINE/AFP/Getty Images]
Saudi Arabia's former intelligence minister Prince Turki al-Faisal bin Abdulziz al-Saud [FAYEZ NURELDINE/AFP/Getty Images]

Saudi Arabia's former intelligence chief has said that the Kingdom is sticking to the terms of the 2002 Arab Peace Initiative in its drive to normalise relations with Israel.

"The terms are well-known," Prince Turki Al-Faisal told France 24. "The creation of a sovereign Palestinian state with recognised borders and Jerusalem is its capital, and the return of Palestine refugees." He pointed out that these were the conditions that Saudi Arabia added to the initiative before it was adopted by the Arab League 21 years ago.

The Arab Peace Initiative has been rejected by every Israeli government since then. Moreover, several Arab states have bypassed it and forged ties with the occupation state.

Replying to a question about the potential normalisation of ties with Israel without fulfilling these conditions, Al-Faisal confirmed: "What I have said was not my opinion, but it was declared by officials. I trust the officials when they say anything, and anything made by media is nonsense."

According to the New Khalij news website, reports in America claim that Riyadh has proposed to Washington that it will make diplomatic ties with Israel in return for a US pledge to protect the Gulf region, support a peaceful nuclear programme in the Kingdom and approve major arms sales to the Royal Saudi Armed Forces.

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