Report: Saudi Arabia May Aid Israeli Strike on Iran in Exchange for Progress With Palestinians
In closed talks with European lawmakers, Saudi Arabian diplomats said they are in total accord with the Israelis on the Iranian nuclear issue, Israel’s Channel 2 reported on Tuesday.
According to an official at the headquarters of the European Union, as part of a framework coordination agreement with the Israelis, Saudi Arabia is ready to allow Israel’s air force to traverse Saudi airspace to attack Iran, if necessary.
However, the Saudi approval is conditional upon progress towards an agreement between Israel and the Palestinians. The Saudi government is sensitive to public opinion, and cannot allow Israel to use Saudi territory or airspace for military action without demonstrating some progress on the issue of Palestinian statehood, according to the report.
Meanwhile, Israeli officials have denied that they do not know the details of the deal with Iran currently being negotiated by world powers, to which they are opposed. The lawmakers stressed that Israel doesn’t need the United States to reveal what is being said during the talks because Israel has other partners among world powers, along with information obtained from Israel’s intelligence services, which alone have made it clear that the deal in the offing is a bad deal.
An official close to the Obama Administration said that security guarantees won’t be discussed with Israel because the United States, “can’t initiate substantive discussions” before Israel’s upcoming elections.
Today, US Secretary of State John Kerry addressed the issue of negotiations, less than a day after a major leak occurred regarding the negotiations with Iran. Kerry, who spoke during a Congressional hearing on the State Department’s budget, said that it is too early to speak of an agreement between the parties, and noted that the United States is not prepared to agree to a nuclear Iran. Kerry also lashed out at the opponents of the agreement – including Israel – saying that they do not know the details of the talks.
“This is our policy: Iran will not get nuclear weapons. Anyone going around saying that they don’t like the deal, doesn’t even know what the deal is. There’s still no deal at all,” said Kerry. He added that the United States expects to know soon whether Iran is ready to agree to the proposed terms, which he said were reasonable and verifiable. He ended saying that Iran must comply with the demand of the p5+1 and demonstrate it is not interested in nuclear weapons.
Before Kerry’s address, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that he intends to fight the emerging agreement when he visits Congress next week. During a tour of Israel’s Southern Command bases, Netanyahu said that, “Unfortunately, the information I have been receiving these last few days confirm many of our concerns about the upcoming deal between the P5+1 and Iran. This agreement, if signed, would allow Iran to become a nuclear threshold state.”
Netanyahu added that, “this is a bad agreement which endangers our future. My duty as Prime Minister is to do everything possible to avoid such an agreement. So I am going to Washington to speak before Congress, because Congress might be the last chance to stop the agreement with Iran.”