Israel Officially Allows Israelis to Travel to Saudi Arabia

The Interior Ministry announced on Sunday that it will now permit Israelis to visit Saudi Arabia, for the first time in Israel s history.

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According to the order, Muslim citizens of Israel are permitted to travel to the Saudi city of Mecca to perform the Hajj or Umrah religious pilgrimage.

It also allows Israeli businessmen to go to the kingdom to participate in business meetings and funding if the applicant already made arrangements for the visit with Saudi officials.

The visit is limited to nine days.

Until now, Israeli law banned citizens from traveling to many Arab countries, including Saudi Arabia, without express permission from the interior minister. Increasingly common visits to the kingdom by Israeli businessmen were generally held secretly.

Last year, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates backed an economic summit supporting Trump’s “deal of the century” economic conference.

Israel’s decision to allow Israelis to visit Saudi Arabia comes days before US President Donald Trump’s proposed “deal of the century” before Israeli leaders’ visit Washington.

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