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Exposure: Saudi Arabia presses to cancel "electricity for water" agreement between Israel, Jordan and the United Arab Emirates

dani191

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Exposure: Saudi Arabia presses to cancel "electricity for water" agreement between Israel, Jordan and the United Arab Emirates
The Saudis heard about the agreement following the publication in Walla! And were furious that they had been surprised. Saudi officials demanded that their counterparts in the Emirates cancel the agreement, and offered an alternative deal in which Saudi Arabia would replace Israel in the project. Israeli officials have said that Saudi pressure has delayed the signing and softened some of the wording of the agreement.

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The Saudi Arabian government has put heavy pressure on the UAE to cancel the "electricity for water" agreement signed with Israel and Jordan last Monday in Dubai, Walla! Two senior Israeli officials are involved in the matter and another source has been updated on the issue in detail.
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Last Wednesday, the agreement was unveiled at Walla !, as part of which a huge solar farm will be built in the Jordanian desert that will generate electricity for Israel. In return, a water desalination facility will be built in Israeli territory for the beach in the high school, which will produce water for Jordan. UAE companies will set up the two projects.

The agreement was made possible thanks to the Avraham agreements, which normalized relations between Israel and the United Arab Emirates. The agreement was reached after negotiations that lasted several months between the parties and is the largest cooperation project ever in the region on climate and renewable energy. The person who helped push for the agreement is the climate envoy of the US administration John Kerry.

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Israeli officials said that when the Saudis saw the publication about the agreement, they were surprised. The emirates and Jordanians did not update them in advance on the matter. The Saudis were furious that they were left in the dark and felt that the agreement undermined the vision of the "Green Middle East", recently launched by Saudi Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman and also under the Saudi attempt to take the lead in the region in dealing with the climate crisis. Also, the Saudis have not yet joined the Abrahamic agreements and do not maintain diplomatic relations with Israel, so Israeli involvement in the project automatically excludes them from it.



Following the publication, last weekend very senior Saudi government officials called their counterparts in Abu Dhabi and demanded clarification. Saudi officials have urged the emirates to withdraw from the agreement with Israel, and have even offered an alternative deal in which Saudi Arabia will replace Israel in the project.

Israeli officials said the emirates did not like the Saudi pressure. They updated Kerry, their counterparts in the Israeli government and the Jordanians on what was happening. The emirates did not want to cancel the agreement but in order to appease the Saudis they sought to soften the wording of the agreement so that on the outside it would seem less binding. Israeli officials told Walla! Because Israel did not object to this because the changes did not materially change the agreement.


The agreement was supposed to be signed on Monday morning, but the signing was delayed due in part to Saudi pressure and the need to negotiate quickly to soften the wording of the agreement. Monday afternoon in the presence of U.S. envoy John Kerry.

Energy Minister Karin Elharar and other senior officials in the Ministry of Energy declined to comment on the details in the article but did not deny them. UAE officials have declined to comment. The Saudi Embassy in Washington has not yet responded to questions on the subject.
 

SQ8

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Economic versus any religious angle. KSA wants to be the “head honcho” and will do whatever it needs to keep it that way.
 

denel

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Economic versus any religious angle. KSA wants to be the “head honcho” and will do whatever it needs to keep it that way.
Correct - there will be camps and camps within camps in that region.

There is no choice when it comes to water. dead sea is complete gone. There is also discussion to get desalination water into the dead sea as well plus share it with jordan too.
 

dani191

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Correct - there will be camps and camps within camps in that region.

There is no choice when it comes to water. dead sea is complete gone. There is also discussion to get desalination water into the dead sea as well plus share it with jordan too.
they can be part of the deal
 

SQ8

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they can be part of the deal
That reduces diplomatic currency for Saudi Arabia- it has to appear as a leader to the muslim world regardless of their stance on Israel.

So, the option then comes to get the money from this deal by kicking Israel out of the mix. KSA is fairly wary of the UAE asserting itself as a GCC leader and reducing Saudi impact on Oman and Bahrain. So despite whatever intentions Israel has, this is a big brother - little brother vibe that Israel is best handling cordially and cautiously.
 

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