Under a picture of Syrian President Bashar Assad, Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem, right, kisses his Lebanese counterpart Fawzi Salloukh, left, after they signed a joint document announcing the start of diplomatic relations between Syria and Lebanon, in Damascus, Syria, Wednesday, Oct. 15, 2008. The two countries have not had formal diplomatic relations since both gained independence from France in the 1940s in what many Lebanese saw as Syrian refusal to recognize Lebanese sovereignty. (AP)
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