September 25, 2006

Israel-Saudi talks?

I'm seeing reports of Ehud Olmert visiting leading Saudi royals; possibly even the king himself. This is from the International Herald Tribune:
According to Yediot, the secret talks 10 days ago between Olmert and the senior Saudi official focused on Iran's nuclear program and achieving peace between Israel and the Palestinians.

Israel and the United States say Iran is trying to produce nuclear weapons. Tehran insists its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes.

The Saudi peace initiative, which calls for a full Israeli withdrawal from lands it captured in the 1967 Mideast war in exchange for normalization and relations with all Arab countries, had been rejected by Sharon outright.

But in an interview with Yediot last week, Olmert responded differently.

"I am very impressed with different processes and statements that are connected to Saudi Arabia, some that have been stated publicly and others as well. I am very impressed with King Abdullah's wisdom and sense of responsibility," Olmert was quoted as saying in Yediot.

When asked if Israel was holding secret contacts with Saudi Arabia, Olmert said: "I do not have to answer every question."
I'm guessing that Iran was more important to Saudi than the Palestinian issue but who knows?


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