Syria to make up with Lebanese critic

After apology, Assad will meet Druse leader who called him snake, tyrant.

March 16, 2010 13:46
1 minute read.
 Druse leader Walid Jumblatt speaks during a press

walid jumblatt lebanon druse 311 AP. (photo credit: AP)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


BEIRUT — Syria is ready to meet with a Lebanese politician who was one of its harshest critics in the past years and open a new page in relations, days after he said his comments about Damascus were "improper," Hizbullah said.

A reconciliation between Walid Jumblatt, leader of Lebanon's Druse sect, and Damascus could boost Syria's role in Lebanese politics years after its troops were forced out of the country. It will also probably weaken the Western-backed coalition that Jumblatt once helped lead until he split with them in August.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.

Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah has been mediating between the Syrians and Jumblatt for several months.

A Hizbullah statement released late Monday said Nasrallah informed Jumblatt that Syria "will overcome" what happened in the past and open a new page. It added that Syrian President Bashar Assad will receive Jumblatt in the near future.

Jumblatt's harshest verbal attack against Assad came on February 2007 when he told a crowd of tens of thousands of supporters that Assad was a "snake" and a "tyrant" and called for revenge against him.

The Hizbullah statement said the Syrian decision came after Jumblatt's "clear stance and courageous review" of his comments.

After the Hizbullah announcement, Jumblatt told Syria's Al-Watan newspaper, which is privately owned but guided by government policy, "the old page has been turned forever."


Jumblatt, 60, was the main force behind the creation of a Western-backed alliance that led massive street protests to demand the withdrawal of Syrian troops from Lebanon following the February 14, 2005 assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri's assassination. Many Lebanese blamed Syria for his death, a claim Damascus denies.

The Syrians pulled their army out of Lebanon in April 2005 ending nearly three decades of domination of their smaller neighbor.

Asked when he expects to visit Damascus, Jumblatt told Al-Watan that "there is no specific date yet but I am waiting to go to Syria because I have a lot to say to President Assad."

"The most important thing is to forget the past and open a new page," he said.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

US PRESIDENT Donald Trump speaks with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in July 2018
November 18, 2018
Trump at crossroads of US-Turkey relations over Khashoggi, Gulen and PKK