Doubting that Tiran and Sanafir belong to Saudi Arabia

The border-demarcation agreements reached during Saudi King Salman’s recent visit to Egypt included returning the islands of Tiran and Sanafir to Saudi sovereignty, after they had been placed under Egyptian control for some time. Some seized the chance to criticize Riyadh, but there are historical documents showing that the islands are Saudi.

If some people do not believe these documents, we should remind them that the late Egyptian journalist Mohammad Hassanein Heikal, who opposed Saudi Arabia, wrote on page 91 of his 1988 book The Thirty-Year War that Tiran and Sanafir belong to Saudi Arabia.

Those people cannot bear what they saw during the king’s visit. They cannot tolerate that Egypt has overcome threats and has now entered a phase of economic vitality, including sustainable development, thanks to the Gulf.


Saudi Arabia and Egypt have once again taken up their joint pivotal role. The axis of moderation in the past decade contributed to curbing tensions and militancy. Gulf states and Egypt are now in one axis and orbit.

Some seized the chance to criticize Riyadh, but there are historical documents showing that the islands are Saudi

Turki Al-Dakhil

That Sheikh Tahnoun bin Zayed, national security adviser of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and Marzouq al-Ghanim, speaker of the Kuwaiti National Assembly, accompanied the king during his visit to Egypt only confirms this.

Egypt is tired of ideologies, and is now being revived through an effective economy. Societies cannot be built on statements, but by providing opportunities.

This article was first published by Okaz on Apr. 14, 2016.
Turki Al-Dakhil is the General Manager of Al Arabiya News Channel. He began his career as a print journalist, covering politics and culture for the Saudi newspapers Okaz, Al-Riyadh and Al-Watan. He then moved to pan-Arab daily Al-Hayat and pan-Arab news magazine Al-Majalla. Turki later became a radio correspondent for the French-owned pan-Arab Radio Monte Carlo and MBC FM. He proceeded to Elaph, an online news magazine and, the news channel’s online platform. Over a ten-year period, Dakhil’s weekly Al Arabiya talk show “Edaat” (Spotlights) provided an opportunity for proponents of Arab and Islamic social reform to make their case to a mass audience. Turki also owns Al Mesbar Studies and Research Centre and Madarek Publishing House in Dubai. He has received several awards and honors, including the America Abroad Media annual award for his role in supporting civil society, human rights and advancing women’s roles in Gulf societies. He tweets @TurkiAldakhil.

Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:47 - GMT 06:47
Disclaimer: Views expressed by writers in this section are their own and do not reflect Al Arabiya English's point-of-view.