US denies Blinken calls to Abbas, Netanyahu related to Saudi normalization breakthrough

Jacob Magid is The Times of Israel's US bureau chief

(L) Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, May 19, 2023. (Saudi Press Agency via AP); (C) Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem (Alex Kolomoisky/Pool/Flash90); (L) US President Joe Biden on November 2, 2022 in Washington, DC (Michael A. McCoy / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP)
(L) Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, May 19, 2023. (Saudi Press Agency via AP); (C) Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem (Alex Kolomoisky/Pool/Flash90); (L) US President Joe Biden on November 2, 2022 in Washington, DC (Michael A. McCoy / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP)

US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan said during a Tuesday White House briefing that while Blinken’s calls with Netanyahu and Abbas were more than just routine, they do not “portend any imminent breakthrough or action with respect to the question of normalization.”

“It’s an important moment for a check-in at a high level, and Secretary Blinken is well-placed to do that given his relationships with both men and the central role that he is playing in efforts to explore whether in fact a broader normalization is possible,” Sullivan says.

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