No Normalization With Israel Until Two-state Solution Reached, Saudi FM Says

Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as the capital is Saudi Arabia's requirement for peace with Israel, Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir tells CNN

Ben Samuels
Ben Samuels
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Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman with U.S. President Joe Biden and Saudi Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel al-Jubeir at Al-Salam Palace in Jeddah.
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman with U.S. President Joe Biden and Saudi Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel al-Jubeir at Al-Salam Palace in Jeddah.Credit: BANDAR AL-JALOUD - AFP
Ben Samuels
Ben Samuels

JEDDAH—Saudi Arabia will not fully normalize ties with Israel until a two-state solution with the Palestinians is reached, Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir said Friday.

"We have said that Saudi Arabia supports the Arab Peace Initiative. In fact, we offered it. We have made it clear that peace comes at the end of this process, not at the beginning of it," Jubeir told CNN's Wolf Blitzer.

"We have also said that the countries that signed the Abrahamic Accords [sic] with Israel, those are sovereign decisions made by those countries. We hope that those decisions will have a positive impact on Israeli domestic efforts," he added.

When asked if Saudi Arabia was prepared to join the Abraham Accords, Jubeir said that Saudi Arabia has made it clear that "we need to have a process, and this process needs to include the implementation of the Arab Peace Initiative. Once we have committed to a two-state settlement with a Palestinian state in the occupied territories with East Jerusalem as its capital, that's our requirements for peace."

"We have taken positions and made it clear that peace is possible, and is a strategic option, but there are certain requirements that have to happen before this takes place," Jubeir added.

His comments follow the Jeddah Communique joint statement issued by the United States and Saudi Arabia following U.S. President Joe Biden's meetings with King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman. Regarding Israeli-Palestinian matters, the statement reads that "the two sides underscored their enduring commitment to a two-state solution, wherein a sovereign and contiguous Palestinian state lives side-by-side in peace and security with Israel, as the only way to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in accordance with the internationally-recognized parameters and the Arab Peace Initiative."

The communique added, "The leaders noted their determination to remain closely coordinated on efforts to encourage the parties to demonstrate – through policies and actions – their commitment to a two-state solution. The United States and Saudi Arabia welcomed all efforts that contribute to reaching a just and comprehensive peace in the region."

"These are sovereign decisions that these two nations have to make, and we would not want to impose ourselves in that decision-making process or make those decisions for them," a senior U.S. official said, noting Biden's comments that normalization efforts would take time. "We understand that they've got to work this out of their own time," the official added.

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