Olmert: Secret talks with Syria 'never existed'

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert categorically denied on Tuesday that Israeli diplomats had held secret talks and reached an agreement with Syrian representatives during former prime minister Ariel Sharon's term in office, saying that such talks "never existed - there wasn't even a fable [about it]." Speaking during a tour of the West Bank, the prime minister said that no one had informed him of any such event taking place. "I did not know anything, and no one in the government knew," he said. "No government officials were involved in this matter." Olmert called the report, which was released in Ha'aretz on Tuesday morning, a "private initiative of someone speaking to himself," adding that it was "not serious and not dignified, and there is no need to waste words on what has been said until now."