PMO denies report on 'promises' to Syria

Army Radio: PM vowed Israel would cede Golan if Syria agreed to hold direct talks, cut Iran ties.

golan heights 224 88 ap (photo credit: AP)
golan heights 224 88 ap
(photo credit: AP)
The Prime Minister's Office denied a report on Army Radio Wednesday which claimed that Prime Minister Ehud Olmert promised Damascus that Israel would withdraw from the Golan Heights on condition that the Syrians agree to direct talks, and to discuss cutting ties with Iran, Hizbullah and Hamas. The report quoted Likud MK Yisrael Katz as saying that the Syrians had agreed to direct talks with Israel, on condition that Israel gives up control of the Golan Heights in advance. On Tuesday, Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni voiced concern that the prime minister would easily give up too much Israeli land without appropriate compensation, saying that there were "issues regarding negotiations with Syria that still require internal planning." Also Tuesday, Olmert claimed that Israel would be able to offer Syria a true alternative to retaining ties with Iran and Hizbullah, and said that the indirect talks would, "at a certain stage," need to turn into direct talks. "Syria will have to decide between the Iranian grip, being a partner in the axis of evil and international isolation, and peace, economic development and joining the family of nations," Olmert had said. Herb Keinon contributed to this report.