Syrian FM warns of war with Israel

By: Roee Nahmias
Israel News
Date: 26.11.2010

Four days after Knesset approval of referendum law, Walid Moallem says ‘full return of Golan Heights is not negotiable.’ He adds that all sides will lose if new war breaks out in region

Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Moallem on Friday warned of the ramifications of a war with Israel. “There is no doubt that closing the horizons to peace may lead to a possible war. This option always exists in our region, as Israel usually outrageously evades the commitment to peace,” he told Russian newspaper Moscow News.

“I want to stress that a new war will not result in a winner and loser,” the Syrian foreign minister added. “Everyone will lose because the existing advanced military technology can cause great damage, even for the side with huge military power.”

Moallem was asked about the chances for peace negotiations with Israel, four days after the Knesset approved a law requiring the government to hold a referendum on any withdrawal from territories under full Israeli sovereignty.

“The negotiations on the Syrian channel are possible as far as we are concerned if there is a partner which seeks peace – something which does not exist at the moment. The negotiations must take into account a full return to the Golan up to the June 4 1967 border. This matter is not negotiable, and is the basis for a dialogue on the other issues stemming from it.”

Damascus harshly criticized the newly approved referendum law on Tuesday. A Foreign Ministry source told the official SANA news agency that “the decision amounts to contempt of international law and the position and desire of the entire international community, which confirmed in the past and still maintains that east Jerusalem and the Syrian Golan Heights are occupied Arab territory.”