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Blinken: 'Virtually every Arab country wants to normalise relations with Israel'

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has said there is "an extraordinary opportunity" in the coming months for Israel to normalise ties with its Arab neighbours.

"Virtually every Arab country now genuinely wants to integrate Israel into the region to normalise relations... to provide security commitments and assurances so that Israel can feel more safe," Blinken said on Saturday during a panel discussion at the annual Munich Security Conference.

"And there's also, I think, the imperative, that's more urgent than ever, to proceed to a Palestinian state that also ensures the security of Israel," he added.

For several months, the Biden administration has been working to secure a deal to normalise relations between Saudi Arabia and Israel. Riyadh has affirmed that it will not normalise ties without the creation of a Palestinian state. 

antony blinken
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken takes part in a panel discussion at the Munich Security Conference in Munich, southern Germany on 17 February 2024 (Thomas Kienzle/AFP)