Israel 'open' to peace talks with Syria

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman has said he is willing to negotiate peace with Syria, but only if talks are held without preconditions.

Syria recently said it would resume indirect peace talks with the new Israeli government as long as they focused on a complete Israeli withdrawal from the Golan Heights.

Israel captured the plateau from Syria in June 1967.

Mr Lieberman told Israel Radio today he would “be glad to negotiate with Syria this evening, but without preconditions”.

He added: “They say, first go back to ’67 lines and give up the Golan. If we agree to that, what is there to negotiate?”

Previous talks have broken down over the extent of an Israeli withdrawal.

Both Israel’s new prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, and Mr Lieberman have said they would not be willing to cede the territory Syria wants.

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