Syria looks for dialogue with USA
Syria on Thursday called for dialogue with the United States as tensions between Damascus and Washington have been mounting since the publication of the UN report about the killing of former Lebanese premier Rafiq Hariri.
"It's time for dialogue, which must take precedence over the use of force," said an editorial in the official Al-Thawra daily. "The language of pressure and threats used by US President George Bush and his Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice are closing off the avenues for dialogue even though there are many points on which agreement is possible," the newspaper, which is a government mouthpiece, read.
"This is not the time for the use of force, which has proved a failure in other parts of the world but the time for dialogue... because Syrians and Americans have a lot in common and the American people are a friendly people."
Similar ideas were voiced on Wednesday by Syria's Minister of Expatriates, Buthaina Shabaan, who met a delegation from the U.S. Presbyterian church. "Strategies used by the U.S. do not serve American interests and the American people. Syria has always supported builiding the best ties with United States and deepening cooperation and respect in both peoples interests," she said.
"Syria is well known of its obvious political inclination of boosting stability and security as well achieving peace based on the international legitimacy. Syria's history underlines to what extent it is cooperating with the international community in all domains," the Syrian minister was quoted as saying.