Only some days after the very first, a commercial flight from Tel Aviv to Abu Dhabi crossed the Saudi airspace, the president of US Donald Trump, praised UAE for its openness towards the Israel-UAE direct flights. However, Saudi Arabia disagrees with the kingdom when it comes to having a friendlier relationship with Israel.
On a call with Donald Trump, King Salman informed him that Saudi Arabia wouldn’t be welcoming this relationship unless Israel signs a peace accord on the Palestinian issue. King Salman believes that a lasting and fair solution needs to be reached, which will be recognized by the Jewish state.
This announcement came only days after the first flight from Tel Aviv to Abu Dhabi, which cemented the ties between Israel and UAE under a US-backed deal called the Abraham Accords. Direct flights between Israel and UAE would cut time from taking log detours along the Arabian Peninsula. This recognition by UAE invited praise from the West; however, Saudi wasn’t keen on its development.
Even though Saudi Arabia has denied its support for this relationship outwardly, it has opened its airspace for the same. Trump has been increasingly mending his relationship with the gulf countries since it landed US in a bit of an oil spot earlier this year.
Saudi Arabia, Islam’s holy ground, and the Arab world’s biggest economy have more significant political concerns than the UAE. The acknowledgment of a UAE-Israel deal would mean betraying Palestine and the harm it has procured throughout history. Palestine and Israel have always been at crossroads, and Palestine is currently undergoing a humanitarian crisis with thousands who die of hunger and bombing every single day.
Trump is also urging Saudi to improve its regional relations with Qatar. Riyadh accused Doha of siding with Iran. Even after excessive international pressure, these issues seem relentless and never-ending.