Reports in Arab media sources state that Iran has reached understandings with Israel to prevent an all-out war.
According to a report in the London-based Saudi website Elaph, last week Israel and Iran held secret meetings in Jordan to set down the rules-of-the-game to prevent an all-out war in the region. The meeting was held in a hotel in Amman with a Jordanian mediator.
The Iranian Ambassador to Jordan Mujtaba Ferdousi Pour, told the Jordanian newspaper Al Rad (al Ghad) on May 23, that Iran has no intention of participating in the battles in southern Syria, nor will their client militias, including Hezbollah.
The Syrian website Nedaa Syria / Syria Call wrote last week, “The military wing of the Lebanese Hezbollah and the Iranian-backed Fatmiyon Brigade withdrew from the towns of Etman and Khirbet Ghazala in the Daraa countryside towards the capital Damascus, in conjunction with an official Iranian denial of the presence of any troops in southern Syria.”
But, the Nedaa report also stated that there is no indication that Iranian Revolutionary Guard have withdrawn from bases in other areas, including in the Quneitra province, on the Golan Heights.
The Elaph report states that the Iranian Ambassador to Jordan, Iranian security official, Israeli security officials, including the deputy chief of the Mossad participated in the meeting. A Jordanian official ran messages between their two rooms.
The alleged meeting discussed the expected upcoming battle in southern Syria, which is near the borders of Israel and Jordan, and in particular the areas of Quneitra and Daraa.
The report states that Iran agreed that Iranian and Hezbollah forces will not participate in those battles against the Syrian Free Army (aka the Rebels).
[Translated from Elaph:] “The Iranian ambassador in Amman said in a press statement that the Iranian forces and militias loyal to them will not participate in the battles to be conducted by the regime soon in the provinces of Daraa and Kenitra.
He added that Iran has reached understandings with Jordan and other forces in the region not to participate in the upcoming battles and not to be in Daraa and Quneitra so as not to confront or escalation in the region may lead to full-scale war.”
In return, Israel said they will not get involved in those battles, as long as Iran and Iranian supported militias do not enter those areas.
The Elaph report also said that the Russians were closely following the discussions.
Ha’aretz reports that Russia is considering trying to keep Iranian forces, as well as their Shiite allies, 60 kilometers from Israel’s border, fearing that additional israeli strikes wou;d undermine Assad’s regime, which Russia has been propping up.
Reacting to the credibility of the Elaph report, a senior Israeli official told Israel’s Channel 10 that the report is not true, and it [the negotiations] never happened.
Considering the massive destruction that Israel has rained down on the Iranian military in Syria, after Iran crossed Israel’s explicitly stated red lines, the Islamic Regime in Iran may have simply gotten the message, and decided to step back and prevent any further damage.