Published: Fri, March 22, 2019
World Media | By Shelia Harmon

Time for USA to Fully Recognise Israel's Sovereignty Over Golan Heights

Time for USA to Fully Recognise Israel's Sovereignty Over Golan Heights

Since 1974, the UN Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) has monitored the ceasefire between Syria and Israel, and patrolled the demarcation line between Syrian and Israeli-controlled areas of the Golan.

He said: "After 52 years it is time for the United States to fully recognize Israel's Sovereignty over the Golan Heights, which is of critical strategic and security importance to the State of Israel and Regional Stability!"

Hosting Pompeo at his office, Israeli President Reuven Rivlin said Lebanese Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri "cannot say to anyone that Lebanon is separate from Hezbollah" - a reference to the group's clout in Beirut where it has ministers in the coalition cabinet as well as lawmakers in parliament.

Trump's abrupt announcement was immediately cheered by Netanyahu, who faces a tough reelection battle and visits Washington next week.

Top US diplomat Mike Pompeo and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed Wednesday to counter Iranian "aggression" as the two met in Jerusalem just weeks ahead of Israel's elections.

The Golan is recognised as part of Syria by the United Nations. "You can imagine what would have happened if Israel were not in the Golan", Netanyahu told Pompeo.

J Street, a liberal Jewish-American lobbying group, criticized Trump's action, saying that premature US recognition of Israeli sovereignty of Golan is a needlessly provocative move that violates global law.

Netanyahu suggested Thursday in Jerusalem that he's eager to see Trump make a unilateral move akin to his decision in December 2017 to recognize Jerusalem as israel's undivided capital, and his later move of America's embassy there from Tel Aviv.

Greece-Cyprus-Israel summit in Jerusalem
Trump announces US will recognize Israeli sovereignty over Golan Heights

During Thursday's visit, Pompeo placed a prayer note inside the wall.

The Golan Heights were seized in 1967, but officially annexed the territory in a 1981 law.

Netanyahu has accused Iran of attempting to set up a terrorist network to target Israel from the Golan Heights, using the incident to repeat his goal of worldwide recognition for Israel's claim on the area.

The Trump State Department has likewise dropped previous definitions of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and Gaza Strip as being "occupied" by the Jewish state.

Netanyahu had been expected to raise the issue again with Trump during his visit to Washington, an Israeli official said.

The White House said Netanyahu would be welcomed next Monday and Tuesday with both a working meeting and a dinner with Trump. I can't resist repeating this, but I'm going to.

But Robert Malley, president of the Crisis Group consultancy, said the "intensely political" decision by Trump was "in disregard of global law" and "an ominous step at a time when voices in Israel calling for the annexation of the West Bank are growing louder".

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