Israel ‘won’t allow’ Saudi consulate in Al-Quds”

Israeli media reports that the Israeli Foreign Minister disapproves of the recent Saudi announcement of opening a diplomatic mission to the Palestinian Authority in Al-Quds.

Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen said in an interview on Sunday that the occupation state does not plan on allowing the opening of a Saudi diplomatic mission to the Palestinian Authority in Al-Quds, according to Israeli media. The decision comes following Saudi Arabia’s announcement of its first ambassador to Palestine. 

Cohen added that “They don’t need to ask our permission. They haven’t consulted with us and they don’t need to. But we will not authorize the opening of any diplomatic mission whatsoever.”

The Israeli minister suggested that the decision was “prompted by progress in normalization talks between “Israel” and Saudi Arabia,” adding that “the Saudis want to let the Palestinians know that they haven’t forgotten them. But we don’t allow countries to open consulates. It’s incompatible with our position.”

Cohen stressed that “the Palestinian question is not the main topic of discussion. Under the leadership of the Likud [party] and [Prime Minister] Netanyahu, we have concluded the previous peace agreements, and we have proven that the Palestinians are not an obstacle to peace. This is not what will prevent an agreement.”

He mentioned that the “window of opportunity,” for Saudi Arabia to normalize ties with “Israel” stands between 9 to 12 months, stressing that the US would be busy with elections after that.

Saudi Arabia announced on Saturday that Saudi Foreign Ministry official Nayef al-Sudairi, the current ambassador to Jordan, would serve as ambassador to Palestine and consul general in Al-Quds.

Sudairi called the appointment “an important step” during a video broadcast on the Saudi state-affiliated Al-Ekhbariya channel, emphasizing the King and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s desire to “strengthen relations with the brothers of the State of Palestine and give it a formal boost in all areas.”

Saudi Arabia’s embassy in Amman has historically handled the occupied Palestinian Territories file.

Earlier this week, Israeli media reported that the security and military establishment is mapping out a position regarding the security framework of the normalization agreement with Saudi Arabia. 

Israeli channel Kan political affairs commentator Gili Cohen explained that the Israeli security and military establishment is monitoring the discussions between the US administration and senior officials in Saudi Arabia over a huge arms deal that includes advanced systems, and in turn, paves the way for the path of normalization.

Regarding these discussions, the Israeli commentator indicated that the US administration has been committed for years to the qualitative superiority of the Israeli military over the armies of the region, pointing out that the US transfer of advanced weapons systems to Saudi Arabia will affect “Israel”.

Cohen revealed that in recent weeks, Saudi Arabia had conveyed a message to the United States and “Israel”, in which it stated that it did not want small steps on the way to normalization, but rather important ones, that is, a big package that includes weapons.

Cohen suggested that if this happens “Israel must obtain advanced weapon systems in return, to maintain the qualitative superiority of the Israeli army.” 

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