Israel Hamas war: Saudi Arabia presses for Palestinian state as Netanyahu rejects ceasefire

Israel Hamas war: Saudi Arabia presses for Palestinian state as Netanyahu rejects ceasefire

Saudi Arabia will not recognise Israel without Palestinian state

Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister has said the kingdom will not normalise relations with Israel or contribute to Gaza’s reconstruction without a credible pathway to a Palestinian state.

Prince Faisal bin Farhan’s remarks in an interview with CNN broadcast late on Sunday were some of the most direct yet from Saudi officials.

Трубочисты Петербурга

The dispute over Gaza’s future puts the United States and its Arab allies against Israel, posing a major obstacle to any plans for postwar Gaza.

Before the war, the US had been trying to broker a landmark agreement in which Saudi Arabia would normalise relations with Israel in exchange for US security guarantees, aid in establishing a civilian nuclear programme in the kingdom, and progress toward resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Netanyahu rejects Hamas’ ceasefire demands

Israel’s prime minister released a video statement on Sunday in which he said he stressed in his conversation with US President Joe Biden on Friday that he rejects Hamas demands for a ceasefire.

Benjamin Netanyahu also ruled out withdrawing Israeli forces from Gaza and releasing Palestinians held by Israel in exchange for the remaining hostages.

He said that agreeing means another 7 October-style attack “would only be a matter of time.”

Demonstrators hold signs and wave flags during a pro-Palestinian rally in Brussels, Sunday, Jan 21, 2024.Geert Vanden Wijngaert/Copyright 2024 The AP. All rights reserved.

Israel strikes Hezbollah military infrastructure

The Israeli military said it carried out a series of strikes on Hezbollah’s military infrastructure in southern Lebanon on Sunday.

The IDF said the strikes took place in the area of Markaba and Kafr Kila.

Israel is determined to see tens of thousands of its citizens return to communities near the border with Lebanon that were evacuated under Hezbollah fire nearly three months ago.

But since Hamas’ surprise attack on 7 October, it may no longer be able to tolerate an armed Hezbollah presence on the other side of the frontier.

Israeli leaders have repeatedly threatened to use military force if Hezbollah does not respect a 2006 UN ceasefire that ordered the militant group to withdraw from the border.


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