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Will more Arab nations 'come out of the closet' and normalize relations with Israel soon?

Israeli media outlet reports that Saudi Arabia soon to follow, after Sudan, but no other confirmation

Defense Secretary Dr. Mark T. Esper greets Israeli Defense Minister Benjamin Gantz, prior to hosting a Bilat at the Pentagon, Oct. 22, 2020. (Photo: Marv Lynchard, DOD)

A senior Israeli source said he expects more Arab nations "to come out of the closet" soon and normalize relations with Israel, "first Sudan and shortly after Saudi Arabia," according to a report on Israel's Channel 12.

The news, not widely reported except in Israeli media, came out the day after Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz met with his American counterpart Mark Esper to discuss security issues.

"Now  we are entering an era of good and positive normalization processes in the Middle East, which actually can face aggressive Iran over all the region," Gantz said. "This … continued cooperation, I would say, is so very important."

Following the Gantz-Esper meeting in Washington on Thursday, Israel's Channel 12 reported that a senior security source said  that the trend of agreements between Israel and other Middle Eastern countries is expected to continue and that, "Sudan and later Saudi Arabia will come out of the closet."

"There was a good meeting, which dealt with Israel's qualitative advantage," the source said. "We have dealt with the issues of equipping, armaments, continuing intelligence and operational cooperation in the Middle East."

The media was rife yesterday with reports that Sudan will quickly declare some sort of peace with Israel as we reported in ALL ARAB NEWS.

On Thursday, National Security Advisor Robert O'Brien told Fox & Friends, "there's more to come."

"I think we're going to have some announcements soon on that front," he said, although he did not get more specific.

Last week, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo urged Saudi Arabia to consider normalizing relations with Israel when he met with Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud at a meeting at the U.S. State Department.

"We hope Saudi Arabia will consider normalizing its relationships as well, and we want to thank them for the assistance they've had in the success of the Abraham Accords so far," Pompeo said.

Saudi Arabia tacitly approved the United Arab Emirates and Bahraini agreements with Israel, the Abraham Accords signed on Sept. 15, but has insisted that a Palestinian state must be on the table.

During his visit to the U.S., Gantz noted that these new alliances are necessary in the face of "Iranian aggression in the region."

"Together with the U.S. and our old and new friendships, we will ensure fruitful cooperation," he said.

Meanwhile his 10-hour visit to the United States this week was described by one article as "urgent."

"Behind the scenes, there is an understanding in Israel there is a chance (U.S. President Donald) Trump will not win the U.S. election so a number of urgent matters must be decided and acted on before that happens," said a report in Breaking Defense.


The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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