IsraPundit

WE'VE MOVED! IsraPundit has relocated to www.israpundit.com. Click here to go there now.
News and views on Israel, Zionism and the war on terrorism.

February 13, 2003

Report: Iraq wanted to reach peace agreement with Israel

This is a rather odd piece given the fact that Saddam funds families of suicide bombers!
Contacts between the two countries broke off due to Israeli skepticism of Iraq's sincerity to reach a peace agreement and American objections.

Representatives of the Iraqi government under Saddam Hussein sent messages to Israeli officials on their willingness to establish diplomatic relations between Iraq and Israel, Maariv reported today. Contacts between the two countries broke off due to Israeli skepticism of Iraq's sincerity to reach a peace agreement and emphatic objections of the U.S. government, the paper said.

According to the exclusive Maariv report, due to be published in its weekend edition tomorrow, contacts between Israeli and Iraqi officials began in the summer of 1987. Gil Glazer, an established and influential Jew in the American government, relayed a message from Iraq's Ambassador to the United States Nizar Hamdoon to then-energy minister Moshe Shahal. In the message Hamdoon expressed his willingness to meet with Shahal.

Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir expressed his support for the meeting, the paper said, and sent Shahal on a speaking tour of the United States. During the tour, arrangements were made for a secret meeting between Hamdoon and Shahal.

Days before the planned meeting, Hamdoon asked Glazer to relay to Israel a request that it publicly announce support for Iraq's stance in its ongoing conflict with Iran. In exchange for this announcement, Hamdoon guaranteed that Iraq would state openly that it had no territorial conflicts with Israel. [more]