Saudi Plan


Picture credit: Associated Press

In March 2002, Saudi Arabia proposed a peace plan that won the approval of the Arab League and gained much media attention and international support. The Plan required Israel to withdraw from the territories that it had occupied since 1967 and to accept the creation of an independent Palestinian state, with East Jerusalem as its capital. In return, following the principle of "land for peace," Saudi Arabia and other Arab states would "establish normal relations with Israel" and provide security for all the states in the region.

The Palestinian Authority approved the peace plan even though it failed to mention explicitly the refugees' right of return but instead called only for a "just solution to the Palestinian refugee problem" in accordance with General Assembly Resolution 194. The Israeli government expressed initial interest in the Plan's provisions, but eventually rejected the proposal.


Saudi-Initiated Peace Plan (March 25, 2002)


Israel Responds to Arab Peace Initiative (April 4, 2007)

Israel says that it cannot accept or compromise on parts of the Saudi peace plan, including the Palestinian right of return and East Jerusalem as the capital of a new Palestinian state. Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert offers to hold a summit with all moderate Arab states to discuss the future of the proposals. At the Riyadh summit, the group of Arab League members involved in furthering the initiative was cut down from 11 to four states, all close to the US: the UAE, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Jordan. (International Relations and Security Network)

Arab Leaders Relaunch Peace Plan (March 28, 2007)

At a Riyadh summit, leaders of the Arab League are trying to revive the Saudi peace plan. The plan gives the state of Israel recognition in return for its withdrawal from land occupied in the 1967 war. Israel rejected it outright when it was first proposed in 2002, but has recently recognized "positive elements" in the plan. However, foreign policy spokesman for Israel's right-wing Likud party, Zalman Shoval, tells the BBC that Israel can never accept parts of the plan allowing Palestinian refugees to return to their pre-1967 homeland, saying that the influx of Palestinians would mean an end of Israel as a Jewish state.

Saudi Peace Plan Is Finding Resistance in UN (March 29, 2002)

The Security Council is not likely to endorse the Saudi peace plan immediately as some provisions in the plan run counter to existing Security Council resolutions. (New York Times)

Arab Leaders Endorse Mideast Peace Plan (March 28, 2002)

Arab leaders attending the Arab League Summit in Beirut have endorsed the Saudi plan to offer Israel "normal relations in return for full withdrawal from Arab lands and a fair solution for Palestinian Refugees based on UN resolutions." (Associated Press)

Saudi Peace Plan Defuses Policy Clash (February 27, 2002)

Palestinian diplomats withdraw their Security Council draft resolution in favor of Saudi Arabia's peace plan. The Saudi initiative has the support of UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, President Bush and Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon. (Los Angeles Times)

Israelis and Palestinians Agree to Resume Security Talks (February 26, 2002)

A Saudi peace initiative raises hopes as Israeli and Palestinian security officials meet in Tel Aviv to discuss how to end the violence. Under the Saudi proposal, Arab states would establish a comprehensive peace agreement with Israel in return for Israeli withdrawal from the territories occupied since 1967. (Associated Press)