Israel-Saudi peace not a done deal: US State Dept.

Biden administration official warns that Jerusalem-Riyadh peace deal still lacks framework, says there are many details yet to be worked out before potential normalization agreement can happen.

By World Israel News Staff

A senior Biden administration official appeared to warn that an historic normalization agreement between Israel and Saudi Arabia is not yet certain, and that significant progress needed to be made on both sides before such a deal comes to fruition.

“We don’t have a formal framework and we don’t have the terms ready to be signed,” said U.S. State Department Deputy Spokesman Vedant Patel during a press briefing on Tuesday evening.

“What I will also say is that this requires – the specifics require an incredible amount of legwork, diplomacy, discipline, rigor, and all of the stakeholders being deeply engaged in this,” Patel continued.

“I will note, though, we don’t have a formal framework and we don’t have the terms ready to be signed. There’s still lots of work to do, and we’re continuing to work that process.”

He added that “we don’t have a formal framework, but the key elements of a pathway, of course, have been on the table. And that’s something that we’re continuing to work toward.”

Patel stressed that the potential agreement between the two countries was part of the Biden administration’s strategy “to advance a more peaceful, secure, and prosperous and stable Middle East region” and that the U.S. will “continue to talk to our regional partners about how more progress can be made.”

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His remarks came just days after White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said that “all parties have formulated a basic framework for what we can strive for,” and expressed optimism that normalization would occur in the near future.

The Saudis have repeatedly said that sweeping concessions to the Palestinians by Israel would be necessary for them to enter into a peace agreement, though recent reports have indicated that Riyadh may be flexible on the issue.