Peace deal: Saudis, Egypt reportedly encouraging Arab-Israel trade ties

by WorldTribune Staff, November 29, 2018

Leaders from Saudi Arabia and Egypt are encouraging Arab nations to open economic relations with Israel as part of the U.S.’s Middle East peace plan, a report said.

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman meets with Egyptian President Abdul Fatah Sisi in Cairo on Nov. 26. / Egyptian Presidency’s office

During his visit to Cairo this week, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman held extensive meetings with Egyptian President Abdul Fatah Sisi which largely dealt with the U.S. “Deal of the Century” peace plan, according to a Nov. 29 report by UK-based Arabic newspaper Al Araby Al Jadeed.

The crown prince and Egyptian president discussed how to bring an end to the Palestinian issue in a way that would lead to as many Arab countries as possible making a fresh start in relations with Israel, the report said.

Arab nations opening trade ties with Israel could also be a springboard toward diplomatic relations, the leaders said.

Among possibilities the two discussed was the Egyptian proposal to hold a summit including Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, and the Palestinian Authority (PA).

Sources told the newspaper that, while PA leader Mahmoud Abbas has voiced opposition in the past to such a proposal out of fear that Sisi would force him to make concessions in a future peace agreement, the Saudi crown prince is likely to express enthusiasm for such a summit, which would strengthen his status amid the reports of his involvement in the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

According to the report, Jordan also supports holding such a summit, and the United Arab Emirates would be interested in participating.

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