Erdogan with Assad
Photo: AP
Report: Israel to renew talks with Syria
Al-Ahram reports Israel willing to accept Turkey as mediator despite recent claims regarding its bias

Egypt's Al-Ahram reported Saturday that Israel would be willing to renew negotiations with Syria through Turkish mediation.


The report claims Israel has changed its tune after refusing Turkish mediation due to the latter's strong rebuke of Israel's Operation Cast Lead in the Gaza Strip.


It adds that Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is scheduled to visit Damascus on December 22 to relay the good news.


The unnamed diplomatic source quoted in the report says he expects negotiations to resume in 2010 from the point in which they left off.


During his visit to Syria, Erdogan is scheduled to meet with President Bashar Assad in order to cosign 42 new documents on cooperation between the two countries.


Recently Turkish relations with Israel have been showing signs of getting back on track, especially since a visit by Minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer, who was told by the Turkish foreign minister that "the crisis is behind us".


Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said a few weeks ago that he preferred direct talks, but that if this was not possible the mediator should be impartial. He offered France as a possible substitute for Turkey.


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