Israeli Minister Grants Unprecedented Interview to Saudi News Site

The Jerusalem Post reports:

An Israeli government minister granted an unprecedented interview to a Saudi news site on Friday.

In a sign of warming, albeit unofficial, ties between the Jewish state and the House of Saud, Ze’ev Elkin, the minister of immigrant absorption, told the Elaph Arab-language web site on Friday that Israel continues to maintain the status quo at the Islamic holy places in Jerusalem.

Israel and Saudi Arabia’s shared enmity for Iran has created an opening for dialogue, although any communication between government officials is likely to remain secret as Riyadh does not formally recognize “the Zionist entity.”

“Jerusalem is relatively calm in both [the east and the west],” said Elkin, whose ministerial portfolio also includes responsibility for Jerusalem-related affairs. “The wave of incitement this past year generated a wave of terrorism that is almost over in Jerusalem and has spread to Judea and Samaria.”

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