Damascus, Asharq Al-Awsat- Well-informed sources in Damascus have revealed that the Syrians were surprised by the Saudi reconciliation describing it as “a pleasant surprise.” Political circles in Damascus were surprised at the Arab media’s focus on inter-Arab disputes, especially on the statements released in preparation for the Kuwait summit, and the focus on the continuation of differences in spite of the Saudi Arabian – Syrian reconciliation.
The sources have stated that the statements issued by the Kuwait summit was “good and positive” in terms of its focus on Gaza and the demands of the Palestinian people, which include Israel being called to account for its crimes. As for the differences in opinion, that is natural, and a system has been put in place for foreign ministers to monitor the situation.
The sources confirmed that what happened [at the summit] was major, and that we will see its results in the coming years. The sources also paid tribute to the Palestinian martyrs and to the steadfast Palestinians who stood up against the brutal Israeli aggression
As for the Saudi – Syrian reconciliation, the sources described it as “an important and serious step which created a conciliatory atmosphere at the summit” even if differences in opinion remained, the important this is “reaching a [mutual] Arab understanding with regards to our interests and political views.”
Commenting on the optimism stirred up by President Barack Obama’s inaugural speech, and whether this signaled a return to the peace process, the source said that the speech was “very reasonable” but felt that “it is premature to talk about peace now.” The sources welcomed the appointment of George Mitchell as US Envoy to the Middle East, but stopped short of commenting on Obama’s desire to replace fear with hope, or of Obama’s intentions to withdraw US forces from Iraq. The sources confirmed that optimism in Syria is based upon Arab will, and said that what was achieved in Gaza confirms that “resistance is the path to an honorable peace.”