Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned the Saudi leadership of the dangers of reigniting ties with long-standing rival Iran following a China-brokered deal last month, while urging greater U.S. engagement in the Middle East region.

Netanyahu’s Concerns over Saudi-Iran Deal

In an interview with CNBC’s Hadley Gamble, Netanyahu emphasized the problems that Iran brings to the Middle East and expressed his concerns about the recent détente between Iran and Saudi Arabia. The Israeli Prime Minister believes that the majority of issues in the region originate from Iran and urged caution for those considering partnerships with the country.

China’s Growing Role in Middle East Diplomacy

The China-brokered deal marked a breakthrough for the Asian nation, which has been attempting to position itself as a diplomatic mediator in global politics. China, a key ally of Iran and major trade partner of Saudi Arabia, has been increasingly involved in diplomatic efforts in the Middle East and beyond, including the war in Ukraine.

Israel Seeking Peace with Saudi Arabia

Israel has been working to establish better relations with Arab states, particularly since the 2020 Abraham Accords, which re-established relations between Israel and Saudi allies Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates. Netanyahu expressed a desire for peace with Saudi Arabia, stating that it would bring about a “quantum leap for peace” and help end the Arab-Israeli conflict.

U.S. Commitment to Middle East Peace

The U.S. has long played a role in mediating relations between Israel and Saudi Arabia, with President Joe Biden highlighting the importance of better relations between the two countries for the entire region. The White House has emphasized the importance of diplomacy and conflict de-escalation in the Middle East, with Netanyahu urging the U.S. to maintain its commitment and engagement in the region.