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In Israel, US envoy maps peace with Syria

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An American embassy official in Tel Aviv confirmed that Hof was here exploring peace concepts with various officials in the region.

The status of the Golan Heights is the main obstacle to Israeli-Syrian peace, which various efforts have failed to secure in recent years. In 2008, Israel and Syria conducted back-channel discussions facilitated by Turkey, but Syrian President Bashar al-Assad suspended the talks in protest over the January war in Gaza.

However, then-Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, who left office in late January, was optimistic that the talks would resume and eventually produce an accord.

"We started negotiations with Syria and... at the end of the day, we will be able to reach an agreement that will end the conflict between us and the Syrians," he said in a speech.

Hof envisions environmental preserve in Golan Heights

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