UK’s The Guardian: Syria’s President Assad asked a mediator to approach Israel’s ex-Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman in 2012 with a request that Jerusalem not oppose the formation of an Alawite enclave.
In response Lieberman asked for information on Ron Arad’s whereabouts & the return the remains of spy Eli Cohen.
Israel Hayom Staff
According to a report in The Guardian on Monday, Syrian President Bashar Assad sent a message to Avigdor Lieberman in 2012, when the latter was serving as foreign minister, asking Israel’s position on the establishment of an Alawite enclave in northwestern Syria.
Syrian President Bashar Assad – Photo: AP
The Guardian reported that a mediator — a well-known diplomatic figure — is understood to have been asked by Assad to approach Lieberman late last year with a request that Israel not stand in the way of attempts to form an Alawite state, which could have meant moving some displaced communities into the Golan Heights area.
Over the past six months, The Guardian reported, diplomats in the region have claimed that contingency planning for a rump state to protect Syrian Alawites has involved diplomatic contact being made by senior Syrian officials with enemy states.
Former Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman – Photo: Yoav Ari Dudkevitch
A source aware of the talks told The Guardian that Lieberman had not rebuffed the approach but had first sought information on the whereabouts of a missing Israeli airman shot down over Lebanon, Ron Arad, as well as three Israeli soldiers captured in the Lebanese village of Sultan Yacoub in 1982, and the remains of Eli Cohen, an Israeli Mossad officer who was caught and executed in Damascus.
View original Israel Hayom publication at: http://www.israelhayom.com/site/newsletter_article.php?id=10899