American news website Axios said the United States, Israel, Saudi Arabia and Egypt are very close to reaching an understanding on a final agreement to transfer sovereignty over the islands of Tiran and Sanafir from Egypt to Saudi Arabia, ahead of US President Joe Biden’s visit to the Middle East.
The Jerusalem Post’s Walla also revealed that Israel, Saudi Arabia and Egypt are about to sign an agreement allowing the transfer of the ownership of the islands to Saudi Arabia, explaining that Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, Foreign Minister Yair Lapid, and Defense Minister Benny Gantz reviewed the details of the agreement and agreed to its principles.
The news website added that Israeli officials said that Saudi Arabia would sign an agreement with Egypt in which it commits to implementing security arrangements on the two islands and pledges to preserve the freedom of navigation for Israeli ships. American, Egyptian, and Saudi diplomats and lawyers are currently working on the agreement, according to Walla. It stressed that the deal’s completion would represent a significant achievement for the Biden administration and would pave the way for gradual normalization between Israel and Saudi Arabia.
Under the Camp David Accords, Egypt is committed to demilitarizing Tiran and Sanafir. Saudi Arabia has accepted all the commitments made by Egypt regarding the two islands.