Thursday, 18 April, 2019

Trump says USA will recognize Israel's sovereignty over Golan Heights

Greece-Cyprus-Israel summit in Jerusalem Beto O'Rourke Blasts Netanyahu for Siding with 'Racists', Calls Abbas 'Ineffective'
Jeannette Daniel | 21 March, 2019, 23:55

Currently, the USA designation of Golan Heights is that of disputed territory after Israel captured the region from Syria in 1967 during the Middle East War.

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!"

Netanyahu thanked the United States president for his decision to "boldly recognize Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights", on his official Twitter page.

Richard Haass, a former senior State Department official who is president of the Council on Foreign Relations, said in a tweet he strongly disagreed with Trump's Golan decision.

(Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images) President Donald Trump talks with journalists before departing the White House March 20, 2019.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Wednesday described the heavily armed Hezbollah group as a risk to their fellow Lebanese and conferred with Israel about the Iranian-backed militia ahead of a trip to Beirut.

Later that year Trump reversed decades of US policy and officially recognized Jerusalem as the Israeli capital, though making clear that he was not prejudging a settlement on where the city's borders should be.

Israel took control of the territory during the Six-Day War in 1967 and later annexed it. PM Netanyahu has been asking the Trump administration to recognize its sovereignty over the region since February 2017.

This is a developing story.

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In early May, a number of positions in the Golan were struck by what Israel said were Iranian missiles fired from Syria. Pompeo suggested that his own visit as the top USA diplomat in Netanyahu's presence was significant.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu thanked US President Donald Trump after he said it was time to recognise Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights.

In addition to its policies toward the Palestinians, the US has taken a hard line toward Iran, much to Netanyahu's delight.

Pompeo said the dispute, which has roiled the Gulf Cooperation Council for nearly two years, is hindering efforts to combat regional threats posed by Iran, the Islamic State group and other terrorist organizations. "It's a place that's important to many faiths and I'm looking forward to it". The wall is one of Judaism's holiest spots, but located in mainly Palestinian east Jerusalem.

The Western Wall is a remnant of the compound of a Jewish temple destroyed by the Romans in 70 AD.

In Israel, Pompeo also attended a summit of Mediterranean natural gas producers Israel, Cyprus and Greece. The elevated plaza above it is the Noble Sanctuary, the third holiest site in Islam, containing the al-Aqsa mosque and the Dome of the Rock.

When Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital, he said it did not determine the city's final borders. "We need to help them figure out how to do that", Pompeo said.

In addition to the Jerusalem recognition, the administration also has cut hundreds of millions of dollars in aid to the Palestinians, helping fuel a financial crisis for Abbas' Palestinian Authority.

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