Mideast Daily News

WSJ: Gulf States offer Normalization with Israel

By Michael Friedson | The Media Line

May 17, 2017

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The Wall Street Journal is reporting an offer by a number of Arab Gulf States to exchange a partial freeze in Israeli settlement building for a list of normalization gestures. According to the newspaper, if building is frozen in parts of the West Bank and the boycott on the Gaza Strip is eased, the Arab nations would permit Israeli airplanes to fly over their territory, remove trade limitations, and establish telecommunication links. It also says the Arab states – the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia – are mulling over the inclusion in the package of visas for Israeli athletes and businessmen. The offer, if it proves to be accurate, is a much less ambitious effort than the 2002 Arab Initiative which sets out conditions the Israelis see as non-starters – such as an Arab “right of return” – and does not accept changes to the promulgated draft. On its face, it could arguably be accepted in both Jerusalem and Ramallah.

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