Popular Twitter account Mujjtahid claims Istanbul-based team working to promote Saudi-Israel deal

Popular Twitter account Mujjtahid claims Istanbul-based team working to promote Saudi-Israel deal
A popular but anonymous Twitter source has claimed that a Saudi team in Turkey is working to promote a normalisation deal between the kingdom and Israel.
3 min read
07 June, 2022
The team working to promote normalisation is allegedly set in Istanbul [Getty]

A popular and anonymous Twitter user has made claims that a Saudi royal official is working in Turkey to promote normalisation with Israel.

The Twitter user, who goes by the name @Mujjtahid and has over 2.3 million followers, claimed the formal advisor in the Saudi Royal Court, Saud Al-Qahtani, has been ordered by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to set up a team in Istanbul. The New Arab could not independently verify the claims.

Mujjtahid has in the past made disclosures about alleged corruption in the Saudi leadership which have angered officials in Riyadh. 

"Under the guidance of Saud Al-Qahtani and the orders of bin Salman, a large office in Istanbul to promote normalisation, the 14th floor of a well-known building in Istanbul, 12 mercenary employees of all Arab nationalities, a basic budget of $4 million annually plus petty cash, managed by Sufian Al-Samarai," tweeted Mujjtahid.

He explained why Al-Samarai was chosen to manage the alleged team, claiming he was willing to "trample" on Arab and Islamic values just to strike a deal with Israel.

Mujjtahid’s unverified tweets come at the backdrop of recent reports which suggest warming relations between Israel and the Arab world’s biggest economy and seat of Islam's two holiest sites.

Bahrain, the UAE, Sudan and Morocco have all agreed to normalise ties with Israel.

Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid said last week that Israel was pushing Saudi Arabia to be the next Arab state to normalise relations with it.

Others have been skeptical about a normalisation deal between Israel and Saudi Arabia being agreed.

Saudi Foreign Minister Faisal bin Farhan clarified the kingdom’s stance during the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, last month.

"We always envisioned that there will be full normalisation with Israel, and I've said before that a full normalisation between us and Israel, between the region and Israel, will bring immense benefits - we won't be able to reap those benefits unless we address the issue of Palestine," he said.

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Riyadh is being courted by Israel, the US, and a number of Gulf Arab nations to break with decades of Arab consensus by recognising Israel as a state, Lapid suggested.

Other Arab nations have in recent weeks discussed legislation that could make normalisation with Israel illegal.