Israeli journalist from Riyadh: KSA-'Israel' ties closer than ever
Israeli journalist Henrique Zimmermann reports from Saudi's capital that the activity of Israeli businessmen that have been working in Saudi Arabia for some time has become noticeable.
An Israeli journalist reported from the Saudi capital, Riyadh, about his impressions regarding the normalization of relations between Saudi Arabia and "Israel", which are currently closer than ever, according to his estimation.
Israeli journalist Henrique Zimmermann told the Israeli iNews 24 website, "Within the rapprochement between Saudi Arabia and Israel, we are witnessing the presence of a Jewish community in Riyadh and an activity of Israeli businessmen who have been working for some time in the kingdom."
Watch here: Netanyahu: Saudi Arabia started normalization with us in 2018
"We are standing at the beginning of a new era. There are new things that have started, but it needs more time," he added.
The Israeli journalist indicated that "during recent weeks, news about official relations between Saudi Arabia and Israel and information regarding the establishment of future relations between the two parties have increased."
"The Israeli prime minister surprised the international community in August 2020 by establishing (normalization) relations with the UAE, Sudan, Morocco, and Bahrain. These countries would not have signed the agreement without the approval of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, which is the most influential country in the Arab world," Zimmermann confirmed.
Read more: Lapid: We laid foundations for Riyadh accession to 'Abraham Accords'
The journalist touched upon the kingdom's conditions for agreeing to normalization with the Israeli occupation, saying that "before the start of the sixth government of [Israeli PM] Benjamin Netanyahu, the most right-wing Israeli government, the de facto leader of the kingdom, Mohammed bin Salman set conditions for joining the Abraham Accords."
"The first condition is that Israel vows not to annex lands in the West Bank. The second is that it will adopt no change in its policy regarding Al-Aqsa Mosque, one of the most sensitive places in the world," the journalist said.
"Riyadh is calling on Israel to improve the working conditions of the Palestinians and to work in coordination with the administration of President Joe Biden," Zimmermann continued, adding that Saudi Arabia is "also calling on the United States, after years of tension, to consider Riyadh as a strategic ally, and to resume selling advanced weapons to the Kingdom, especially the most advanced American F-35 fighter jet."
Read more: Israelis rally against Netanyahu cabinet
Zimmerman claimed that "the most hardline ministers in the Israeli government, who are Betzalel Smotrich (Minister of Finance) and Itamar Ben-Gvir (Minister of Police), pledged to Netanyahu that they would not take any step that could jeopardize normalization with Saudi Arabia."
The Israeli journalist stressed that normalization with Saudi Arabia is "one of the goals of the coming years" and that "attention is directed toward confronting Iran."
Netanyahu in October confirmed that normalization agreements with Arab states would not have been concluded were it not for Saudi Aarbia's approval, adding that establishing relations with the Kingdom will be his main goal during his term.
"The Abraham Accords [normalization agreements] would not have taken place without tacit Saudi approval," he said in an interview for the US media outlet CNN.
Earlier in 2022, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman said, “We do not view Israel as an enemy, but rather as a potential ally in the many interests that we can pursue together, but some issues must be resolved before we can reach that."
It is noteworthy that the UAE, Bahrain, Morocco, and Sudan signed normalization agreements with the occupation under US auspices in mid-September 2020.
Read more: Kochavi says IOF won’t answer to Smotrich, Ben-Gvir: Israeli media