Report: Yair Lapid lobbying Democrats to block Israel-Saudi peace deal

Israel’s Opposition Leader reportedly attempting to torpedo Netanyahu’s efforts to secure normalization with Saudi Arabia.

By World Israel News Staff

Israeli Opposition Leader Yair Lapid (Yesh Atid) is reportedly working to undermine efforts by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to normalize ties between Israel and Saudi Arabia, and is lobbying congressional Democrats to intervene against a possible peace deal.

Channel 13 reported Friday that Lapid met with a delegation of Democratic lawmakers Thursday, during their tour of Israel.

According to the report, the Opposition Leader and former Israeli premier warned them that should a normalization deal between Israel and Saudi Arabia be conditioned on American acceptance of a Saudi civilian nuclear program, such a peace agreement would threaten Israeli security.

“I will oppose any agreement that includes uranium enrichment in Saudi Arabia,” Lapid was quoted as telling the visiting U.S. lawmakers.

“The agreement as it currently stands endangers the security of Israel and the region. We must not give Saudi Arabia the entire cycle of uranium enrichment.”

The ruling Likud party issued a statement touting the Abraham Accords and stating that a deal with Saudi Arabia would further strengthen Israel’s position in the region.

“Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu brought four historic peace agreements that only strengthened the security and status of the State of Israel – and will continue to do so.”

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“It would better if Lapid, who gave Hezbollah Israeli gas reserves for free, does not preach to Prime Minister Netanyahu who will continue to protect Israel’s security and vital interests in any peace settlement.”

Riyadh has for months pressed the Biden administration to back Saudi plans for a civilian atomic program, in exchange for the Islamic kingdom’s normalization of relations with Israel.

Saudi Arabia has long sought to utilize its extensive uranium reserves for a civilian nuclear program.

The report comes just days after the White House downplayed claims that Riyadh had agreed to the “broad contours” of a normalization deal with Israel.

“There’s no agreed framework to codify the normalization or any of the other security considerations that we and our friends have in the region,” U.S. National Security Council spokesman John Kirby told journalists on a press call.

Earlier on Wednesday, The Wall Street Journal reported that U.S. and Saudi officials were “negotiating the details of an agreement they hope to cement within nine-to-12 months.”