Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said direct peace talks with Israel are unlikely before 2009, adding they also depended on the stability of Israel's government, an Emirati newspaper reported on Tuesday.
"The date to begin direct talks depends on Israel itself. There is a crisis related to (Israeli Prime Minister Ehud) Olmert," Al-Khaleej daily quoted Assad as telling local newspaper editors during a visit to the United Arab Emirates.
Direct talks would not start before next year and "depend on the stability of the Israeli government, and the seriousness of the other party," Assad said according to the newspaper, which paraphrased his remarks.
Assad, who concluded a visit to the UAE on Tuesday, said that the Turkish-brokered indirect talks with Israel would eventually need "international sponsorship" from the United States.
"The success of these negotiations hinges on Israeli intentions and political changes in the world," he was quoted as saying on Monday.
Israel and Syria confirmed last month that they had resumed peace negotiations after an eight-year break. Israel said that they began through Turkish go-betweens in February 2007.
Güncelleme Tarihi: 04 Haziran 2008, 15:47