Israeli Foreign Ministry reportedly followed up with the United States, with American officials clarifying that the timing for the ministers’ attempted visit to Saudi Arabia is inappropriate.
Saudi Arabia has refused to issue entry visas into the Kingdom for Israel’s Foreign Minister, Eli Cohen, and Education Minister, Yifat Kish, to attend the upcoming UNESCO conference, Israeli media reported.
According to Israel’s Channel 13, Tel Aviv had attempted to secure the entry visas and invitations for the two ministers to participate in UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee meeting in the Saudi capital, Riyadh, which will run from September 10 to 25.
The Israeli Channel 13 cited senior Israeli sources as saying that Israeli ministers were supposed to arrive in #SaudiArabia to attend the conference, but the Israelis decided to cancel their participation due to Saudi procrastination.https://t.co/uCM52pfIG5
— Al Mayadeen English (@MayadeenEnglish) September 4, 2023
The Kingdom has prevented their entry by refusing to issue visas, and participation reportedly remains limited to professional representatives.
Citing anonymous Israeli officials, the Channel revealed that the Israeli Foreign Ministry had followed up by re-evaluating the situation with the United States, with American officials reportedly clarifying that the timing for the ministers’ attempted visit to Saudi Arabia is inappropriate.
The decision by Saudi Arabia comes at a time when, according to US media, Riyadh and Tel Aviv continue to negotiate on the terms and conditions for a potential normalization deal, sponsored by Washington.