Syrian President speaks on ”possibility of peace”
Syrian President Bashar Assad said Tuesday that indirect talks with Israel have brought "the possibility of peace," though the two countries still have quite a way to go toward that goal.
In an interview with France-3 television, Assad said officials were working to make this happen. "Today there is a possibility of peace," Assad said. "But nonetheless, we cannot say that we are close to achieving peace. We are preparing for direct negotiations. When we reach that step, we will be able to say that we are approaching peace.
"Today, we can only say that we have opened the door to peace," he said. Assad said that direct talks in the future could happen with U.S., French and Turkish backing.
Despite his comments about potential peace, Assad said he believes that Israel "could try to launch different attacks, maybe against Iran, and maybe also against Lebanon, and of course it could launch an attack on Syria." He said such attacks would have "catastrophic results."
According to Assad, the Bush administration "started to remember that there was something called peace seven years into its existence." He added a new administration could help smooth the process.
"Of course we have to wait for the new administration to know what its orientations are," he said. "Afterward we can speak of direct negotiations."