Persian Gulf states open to normalization with Israel

The Persian Gulf Arab states are reportedly offering to start slowly opening ties with Israel in exchange for a continued freeze in Israeli construction in Judea and Samaria. 

The Persian Gulf Arab states seek to launch a normalization process with the state of Israel, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.

To begin the process, the Arab states would like for Israel to continue a freeze in Israeli construction in “certain areas” of Judea and Samaria and to ease its restrictions on imports into the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip.

In turn, the Gulf states are reportedly offering to set up telecommunication lines between Israel and Arab countries allowing for Israeli businesses to trade in Arab countries. Israeli aircraft will also be permitted to fly over their airspace.

The report in the Wall Street Journal says the process is “outlined in an unreleased discussion paper shared among several Gulf countries.”

A senior Arab official involved in the discussion paper reportedly said “we no longer see Israel as an enemy, but a potential opportunity.”

Speaking to the Wall Street Journal, Israeli Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz referred to this new phenomenon as “almost a revolution in the Middle East.”

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called for Israel to take advantage of these new regional opportunities during a meeting in March with the Knesset’s Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee.

“Israel is being sought after. It is a wanted country, first of all because of our cyber technology knowledge, both civilian and military,” Netanyahu said. “I believe in nurturing these interests.”

“In my opinion, if we act wisely, it could assist us in normalizing ties with countries in the region and opening new diplomatic streams that could be more efficient between us and the Palestinians,” Netanyahu added.

By: World Israel News Staff