July 23, 2007

Saudi Arabia Backs Out of Arab Peace Initiative

From Saudi Arabia Backs Out of Arab Peace Initiative:

Saudi Arabia has dropped its support for a land-for-peace deal between Israel and the Arab world over fears of al-Qaeda attacks, an Israeli official said Saturday. "We estimate the Saudis got cold feet over suspicions of Iran and fears of terror attacks sponsored by Iran and al-Qaeda," the official said. The official added that Egypt's intelligence chief Omar Suleiman raised the issue of Saudi Arabia with President Bush during a visit to Washington last week. When Bush announced plans to hold a conference in his speech about the Middle East last week, Saudi Arabia failed to announce whether it would attend the regional meeting. The official added that Saudi Arabia feared that isolating Hamas would push it into Iran's arms and exacerbate Tehran's financial support to radical Palestinian groups. Saudi Arabia's stance set alarms ringing in Amman and prompted the Jordanian monarch to seek an emergency meeting with President Bush.