White House clarifies India-Middle-East-Europe corridor stance
The White House has said US President Joe Biden's comments on the India Middle East Europe Economic Corridor and Hamas attack are being "misunderstood" and that Israel-Saudi Arabia normalisation "may have motivated Hamas to conduct those attacks".
White House National Security Council (NSC) spokesman John Kirby was responding to a question on President Biden hinting that one of the reasons behind Hamas' October 7 attack on Israel was the recent announcement of the India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor that integrates the entire region with a network of rail, road and ports.
Kirby said: "I think you misunderstood him. What he said was that he believed that the normalization process and the agreement that we were trying to reach between Israel and Saudi Arabia for normalisation, which we believe is an important stepping stone to getting to a two-state solution, was what may have motivated Hamas to conduct those attacks. I think you misunderstood what he actually said."
In a joint press conference with Australian PM Anthony Albanese on Wednesday (US local time), US President Biden had said: "I'm convinced one of the reasons Hamas attacked when they did, and I have no proof of this, just my instinct tells me, is because of the progress we were making towards regional integration for Israel, and regional integration overall. We can't leave that work behind."
Recently, Israeli Ambassador to India Naor Gilon asserted that the recent attacks on Israel are driven to sow unrest between Israel, Saudi Arabia, and other Gulf nations.
These attacks also aimed to disrupt the relationships established by the Abraham Accords and the I2U2 grouping, which led to increased communication between Israel and the Gulf countries.
He also mentioned that the attacks targeted disrupting relations which were established by the Abraham Accords and I2U2 grouping which resulted in settlement of communication between Israel and Gulf Countries.
The Abraham Accords, brokered by the Trump administration, comprise a set of agreements that Israel signed with four Arab nations: the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Morocco, Bahrain, and Sudan. These agreements were established between September 2020 and January 2021.
According to India's Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), the Abraham Accords are bilateral agreements on Arab-Israeli normalization signed between Israel and the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain on September 15, 2020.
Additionally, the I2U2 Group is a grouping of India, Israel, the United Arab Emirates, and the United States. The group's first joint statement, released on July 14, 2022, states that the countries aim to cooperate on "joint investments and new initiatives in water, energy, transportation, space, health, and food security, said MEA.
Gilon also affirmed Israel's commitment to taking stringent action to eliminate extremist groups from the region.
Ambassador asserted, "I think we will go very far because if not, it will harm all the moderate regimes in the Middle East and we have to make sure that the radicals...the same radical religious ideology that has to be uprooted and we are going to uproot as much as we can at least this part of these extremists."