The Saudi government’s official state news agency, the Saudi Press Agency, has reported the Saudi Cabinet issued a strong directive Monday calling for “swift action” to be taken to establish an “independent vibrant Palestinian state.”

The Saudi Cabinet summed up statements made by Minister of Culture and Information, Abdul-Aziz Khoja, calling on the United States to “put pressure on Israel” to implement a March 2002 Saudi initiative. The measure would require Israel to expel Jews from East Jerusalem and other areas captured by Israel during the 1967 Six-Day War to make room for an independent Palestinian state.

The 2002 initiative also called for Israel to recognize a December 1949 U.N. resolution that calls for Palestinian Arab refugees and their descendants to return to Arab villages abandoned during Israel’s 1948 War of Independence.

Saudi Arabia has remained in an active state of war with Israel since 1948 and is the only Arab nation state contiguous to Israel that has never signed a peace agreement or even an armistice deal with Israel. The Arab League declared war to decimate the nascent Jewish state in 1948. That state of war still exists, and Saudi Arabia exercises a leadership role within the Arab League.

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Since 1948, Egypt and Jordan have signed peace treaties with Israel, and Syria and Lebanon have signed armistice accords with Israel.

In the context of its war with Israel, Saudi Arabia continues to provide funding for Damascus-based Palestinian terrorist organizations that rejected the peace process with Israel.

David Bedein can be reached at dbedein@israelbehindthenews.com

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David Bedein is an MSW community organizer and an investigative journalist.   In 1987, Bedein established the Israel Resource News Agency at Beit Agron to accompany foreign journalists in their coverage of Israel, to balance the media lobbies established by the PLO and their allies.   Mr. Bedein has reported for news outlets such as CNN Radio, Makor Rishon, Philadelphia Inquirer, Los Angeles Times, BBC and The Jerusalem Post, For four years, Mr. Bedein acted as the Middle East correspondent for The Philadelphia Bulletin, writing 1,062 articles until the newspaper ceased operation in 2010. Bedein has covered breaking Middle East negotiations in Oslo, Ottawa, Shepherdstown, The Wye Plantation, Annapolis, Geneva, Nicosia, Washington, D.C., London, Bonn, and Vienna. Bedein has overseen investigative studies of the Palestinian Authority, the Expulsion Process from Gush Katif and Samaria, The Peres Center for Peace, Peace Now, The International Center for Economic Cooperation of Yossi Beilin, the ISM, Adalah, and the New Israel Fund.   Since 2005, Bedein has also served as Director of the Center for Near East Policy Research.   A focus of the center's investigations is The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA). In that context, Bedein authored Roadblock to Peace: How the UN Perpetuates the Arab-Israeli Conflict - UNRWA Policies Reconsidered, which caps Bedein's 28 years of investigations of UNRWA. The Center for Near East Policy Research has been instrumental in reaching elected officials, decision makers and journalists, commissioning studies, reports, news stories and films. In 2009, the center began decided to produce short movies, in addition to monographs, to film every aspect of UNRWA education in a clear and cogent fashion.   The center has so far produced seven short documentary pieces n UNRWA which have received international acclaim and recognition, showing how which UNRWA promotes anti-Semitism and incitement to violence in their education'   In sum, Bedein has pioneered The UNRWA Reform Initiative, a strategy which calls for donor nations to insist on reasonable reforms of UNRWA. Bedein and his team of experts provide timely briefings to members to legislative bodies world wide, bringing the results of his investigations to donor nations, while demanding reforms based on transparency, refugee resettlement and the demand that terrorists be removed from the UNRWA schools and UNRWA payroll.   Bedein's work can be found at: www.IsraelBehindTheNews.com and www.cfnepr.com. A new site,unrwa-monitor.com, will be launched very soon.