Report: US secretly talking peace with Syrian officials

January 1, 2011 10:48


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The US has been secretly communicating with Syrian officials in recent weeks in hopes of brokering a comprehensive peace agreement between Syria and Israel, Kuwaiti newspaper Al-Rai reported on Saturday.

Sources told Al-Rai that the US was contacted by Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Moallem with the message that Syria was ready to renew dialogue with the Israelis and reach a peace deal.

The Obama administration believes peace between Israel and Syria would constitute a breakthrough that would help kick start stalled Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, according to the sources.

The Al-Rai report added that US special envoy Dennis Ross said that the Syrians are prepared to distance themselves from Iran, Hizbullah and Hamas and cooperate with the US in the war on terrorism. The Israelis in return have expressed willingness to return the Golan Heights to Syria, reach an agreement on water rights and immediately normalize relations with Damascus.

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