No diplomatic ties with Israel without independent Palestinian state: Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia on Tuesday said that it will not establish diplomatic ties with Israel without the creation of an independent Palestinian state.

“There will be no diplomatic relations with Israel unless an independent Palestinian state is recognized on the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital, and that the Israeli aggression on the Gaza Strip stops,” a Saudi Foreign Ministry statement said.

The ministry also said that normalization was dependent on the withdrawal of all Israeli forces from Gaza.

The statement came after US National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said the US administration has received “positive feedback” that Saudi Arabia and Israel are willing to continue to have normalization discussions.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken earlier said that the normalization between Saudi Arabia and Israel would produce “immense benefits that would come for everyone concerned with Israel’s further integration into the region.”

The ministry also called on the UN Security Council permanent members to “expedite the recognition of the Palestinian state … so that the Palestinian people can obtain their legitimate rights and so that a comprehensive and just peace is achieved for all.”

Israel has launched a deadly offensive on Gaza following an Oct. 7 attack by Hamas, killing at least 27,585 Palestinians and injuring 66,978 others, while nearly 1,200 Israelis are believed to have been killed in the Hamas attack.

The Israeli offensive has left 85% of Gaza’s population internally displaced amid acute shortages of food, clean water and medicine, while 60% of the enclave’s infrastructure has been damaged or destroyed, according to the UN. – (Anadolu Agency)