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United front against Iran said to be at center of Netanyahu-MBS talks

The Prime Minister’s Office has not denied Netanyahu met with MBS earlier this week in Saudi Arabia

November 24, 2020

The main issue raised during Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s reported meeting on Sunday was the creation of a united front against Iran, Saudi officials told Hebrew-language daily Israel Hayom on Monday.

According to the anonymous sources, the Saudis are certain that US President-elect Joe Biden and his administration have already drawn up plans to reenter the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), also known as the Iran nuclear deal, or a revised version of the agreement.  

Netanyahu, along with Israel’s Mossad chief Yossi Cohen, reportedly flew to the Saudi Arabian city of Neom, where they met with Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman (MBS) and outgoing US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Sunday. 

The Prime Minister’s Office has refused to comment on the report but has not denied the visit to the Gulf Kingdom took place.  

Saudi Arabia considers Tehran its most dangerous rival in the region, and have reportedly moved to strengthen its covert ties with the Jewish state as they both share a common enemy in the Islamic Republic.   

Another topic discussed, according to the daily, was the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, with the Saudis expressing their desire to see Jerusalem resume peace talks with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. 

Earlier this week, Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud said the Islamic Kingdom supports full normalization with Israel but stressed that a deal between the two countries would only come after the creation of a “Palestinian state on 1967 [i.e. 1949] borders.” 

“We have supported normalization with Israel for a long time,” the minister told Reuters on the sidelines of the G20 summit convened earlier this week. “We are the authors of the Arab peace initiative of 2002, which envisaged complete normalization with Israel.”

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