Israeli singer 'may one day perform in Saudi Arabia', Saudi writer says

Israeli singer 'may one day perform in Saudi Arabia', Saudi writer says
Turki Al-Hamad, a Saudi writer who is often described as being close to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, said there may come a day in which an Israeli singer will perform in the kingdom
2 min read
13 July, 2022
In the past year a number of high-profile Western music stars performed in Saudi Arabia [Getty]

A Saudi writer who has been described as a close advisor to Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has said he expects that an Israeli singer would "one day" be able to perform a concert in Saudi Arabia.

In an interview with Hebrew newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth, Turki Al-Hamad showed support for any prospective Saudi normalisation project with Israel.

"I do not know who Omer Adam is but my children probably know," he said, referring to the Israeli singer. "Imagine him performing on stage one day in Saudi Arabia."

Over the past year, a number of high-profile western music stars including Mariah Carey, 50 Cent, Janet Jackson and Sean Paul have performed concerts in Saudi Arabia as part of Prince Mohammed's "liberalisation" drive that has led to new cinemas, concerts and sporting extravaganzas.

Al-Hamad's interview comes ahead of US President Joe Biden's visit to Saudi Arabia this week after visiting Israel and the occupied West Bank.

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Biden landed in Israel on Wednesday and will stay there until Thursday before flying to Saudi Arabia from Tel Aviv.

Late last month, Biden said part of the reason for his visit to Saudi Arabia was to “deepen Israel’s integration in the region.”

Speaking on the sidelines of a NATO summit in Spain, Biden said Israel-Saudi normalisation is "good for peace and good for Israeli security.”

While Saudi Arabia and Israel have no formal diplomatic relations, there have been numerous reports suggesting that the two countries are cooperating on security issues, including on Iran.

Before being elected, Biden had vowed to make Saudi Arabia a "pariah" state because it had ordered the killing of dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi in 2018.