Israel-Syria Talks Progress

Alon Liel, who formerly worked in the Israel Foreign Ministry, told the London Daily Telegraph there had been considerable progress in his talks with second-tier Syrian representatives. Syria is ready to make a move to alter its current relations with Iran. “They are asking not only for the Golan Heights but for a change in Washington that will break the Syrian isolation internationally. But, I think they will not do it unless they are assured they have an alternative to Iran. According to Liel, the Syrians may well wait until there is a new president in Washington due to their distrust of George Bush who for years denounced their country as a source of terrorism.

Turkey has been playing a key role as the mediator in the discussions. It suggests the world has not paid sufficient attention to the importance of Turkey in establishing stability in the Middle East. The Syrian attitude most probably will become more supportive of change if someone like Barack Obama becomes president.