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President Biden indicated that Hamas’s recent attack on Israel may have ties to Israel’s diplomatic talks with Saudi Arabia.
During a campaign fundraiser, Biden remarked, “One of the reasons…why Hamas moved on Israel, is because they knew I was about to sit down with the Saudis.” He further shared, “Guess what? The Saudis wanted to recognize Israel.”
These statements come as Israel and Saudi Arabia show signs of increased normalization, with Biden keen on strengthening their bilateral relationship. Last month, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu conveyed optimism about this alliance to Biden, stating, “I think that under your leadership, Mr. President, we can forge a [historic] peace between Israel and Saudi Arabia.”
Despite the signs, the recent Hamas attacks have paused the dialogues between Israel and Saudi Arabia. Reflecting on this setback, Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), who met with Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman concerning a possible peace treaty with Israel, expressed her dismay. She said, “We had left the meeting the night before with such optimism, and then when we found out about the attacks on Israel, it really struck us that this has just made our task that much harder.”