Saudi Arabia seeks to ratchet up pressure against Iran

Israel Ready to Work With Saudis Against Iran
Saudi Arabia seeks to ratchet up pressure against Iran
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20 November, 2017

Hussein Ibish, senior resident scholar at the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington, said Steinitz's remarks "won't surprise anyone who's been paying attention to the budding courtship between Israel and Saudi Arabia, which is being especially pushed by the Israeli side".

Israel's military chief has given an "unprecedented" interview to a Saudi newspaper underlining the ways in which the two countries could unite to counter Iran's influence in the region.

Israel's army confirmed the contents of the rare interview with Arabic-language media.

Israeli Minister of Energy and Water Resources Yuval Steinitz has recognized the existence of secret ties between Israel and "many" Muslim and Arab states, including Saudi Arabia. Elaph is Saudi owned but based in London.

Saudi Arabia and its allies Sunday lashed out at alleged Iranian violations in the region amid tensions between Riyadh and Tehran. The draft also blamed the Shiite group of supporting "terrorist groups" across the region and supplying them with weapons, including ballistic missiles.

According to the members of the panel, the tightening of Yemen's blockade by the Saudi-led coalition and the invocation by Saudi Arabia of paragraph 14 of resolution 2216, which allows United Nations member states to take measures to prevent the transfer of military goods to Houthis, is allegedly an attempt to impede the delivery of humanitarian aid to Yemeni civilians.

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He also said that the allegations made by some lawyers against the Chief Justice should be treated as contempt of court. CJI presided over a hand-picked bench to override yesterday's order referring this case to top 5 judges.

Hariri insists he stepped down because of Hezbollah and Iran's "grip on his country", but observers and regional powers see the Saudi crown prince's hand behind the recent escalation in the crisis.

However, Eisenkot warned that local flare-ups could "lead to a broad strategic conflict".

In an interview with the Saudi electronic newspaper Elaph (considered the first independent publication of the Kingdom) published on Thursday, November 16, the Israeli commander pointed to the joint threat to Israel and Saudi Arabia in the face of Iran.

"There's an opportunity to form a new worldwide coalition in the region with President Trump", Eisenkot added. "We need to carry out a large, comprehensive strategic plan to stop the Iranian threat", Eisenkot said. Riyadh, with which Tel Aviv does not have diplomatic ties, is not the only not so obvious Israel's partner in the region, the minister proffered, adding that his country is "usually the party that is not ashamed" of such contacts.

Asked whether Israel has shared "information" with the Saudis recently, Eisenkot responded, "We are prepared to share information if it is necessary. There are many mutual interests between them [Saudi Arabia] and us".


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