Jared Kushner, White House senior adviser, speaks during a press conference at the James S. Brady Press Room at the White House in Washington, DC, USA, on Thursday, August 13, 2020.
Oliver Contreras | Sipa | Bloomberg via Getty Images
According to the White House senior adviser and son-in-law of US President Donald Trump, Jared Kushner, an agreement between Israel and the United Arab Emirates should be seen as a “historic move”;, though lack of support from Saudi Arabia. .
Under the deal announced on Thursday, which the US helped as a broker, Israel agreed to suspend plans to annex some of the occupied West Bank. It also sparked opposition against Iran, a regional power in the Middle East that the United States, Israel, and the United Arab Emirates all consider to be a major threat to stability.
Saudi Arabia, a close US ally and major powerhouse when it comes to regional policy toward Israel, has kept oddly quiet from news of the agreement.
Kushner told CNBC’s Hadley Gamble in an exclusive interview on Friday, referring to diplomatic relations with Israel: “I think we have other countries that are very interested in moving forward.
“And then, as that progresses, I think Saudi Arabia and Israel will completely normalize their relationship and they will be able to do great things together,” he added.
When pressed by Saudi Arabia’s silence after announcing the deal, Kushner replied: “We just got our first peace deal in 26 years and now you’re saying: ‘Wow, we are want someone else to join right away. ” In 1994, Israel and Jordan agreed to a peace agreement.
“Saudi Arabia is clearly a leader in manufacturing (modernization), but you cannot turn a warship overnight,” he added.
Agreement to make the United Arab Emirates the first Persian Gulf country to normalize relations with Israel and only the third Arab country, after Egypt and Jordan, to have open diplomatic relations with this country.
On Thursday, Trump described the deal as a “major breakthrough” between the two “great friends” of the US, while Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the move could pave the way for other Arab countries. signed the agreement.
United Arab Emirates Foreign Minister Anwar Gargash told CNBC’s Dan Murphy on Thursday that the peace deal is a “win-win” solution.
The European Union also welcomed the move, arguing it would help promote stability in the region.
However, the deal has been denounced by Palestinian, Iranian and Turkish officials. The Palestinian ambassador to the United Arab Emirates was recalled shortly after the announcement.
Kushner said at a news conference on Thursday that Palestine’s condemnation of the peace agreement between Israel and the United Arab Emirates was “quite predictable.”
Palestine has repeatedly urged Arab leaders not to normalize diplomatic relations with Israel until a peace agreement to create an independent Palestinian state is secured.
Peace agreement ‘does not change’ the electoral dynamics
For some, the deal was seen as a foreign policy win for Trump, who was behind in a poll against alleged Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden ahead of the entrance election. November.
Trump made Middle East peace a defining feature during his first term, though his administration made little progress.
“I think what we’ve done is we’ve paved the way for a lot of progress in the region by seeing it based on common sense, pragmatism, common interests and a shared vision for a future. better hybrids, “Kushner said on Friday.
“We’ve got rid of some old tumors that have infected the area and we’ve shrunk them over the years,” he added, “everything we do makes sense.”
Ayham Kamel, head of the Eurasia Group’s Middle East and North African practice, said in a note: “For Trump, the deal is directly based on Joe Biden’s strength. The president will declare that he is. He achieved a diplomatic breakthrough that the Obama / Biden administration couldn’t “t.”
“The announcement (about the deal) does not change our views on electoral dynamics, which will be dominated by the economy and coronavirus. This announcement will stimulate the Protestant Christian community in the country.” Trump’s department but probably won’t have a strong impact overall, ”added Kamel.
Biden praised the agreement between Israel and the United Arab Emirates without mentioning Trump administration officials.
“The proximity between Israel and the Arab states builds on the efforts of multiple administrations to promote wider openness between Arab-Israel, including efforts,” he said. of the Obama-Biden administration to build the Arab Peace Initiative ”.
CNBC’s Natasha Turak & Tucker Higgins contributed to this report.