President Donald Trump said on March 21 that it is time for the United States to fully recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the occupied Syrian Golan Heights.
“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,” Trump said on Twitter.
Israel occupied the Golan Heights by force during the 1967 war. The U.N. recognizes the region as a Syrian territory occupied by Israel. In 1981, the U.N. Security Council rejected an Israeli law meant to annex Golan and described the law in resolution 497 as “null and void.”
Despite the international status of the Golan Heights, several senior U.S. officials, including Senator Lindsey Graham, jumped to supports Trump’s decision to gift the Syrian region to Israel.
“President Trump’s decision to recognize the Golan as part of Israel is strategically wise and overall awesome,” Graham said.
Graham is actively working with Senator Ted Cruz to pass a new bill in the Senta and the House to recognize Israel’s Sovereignty over the Golan Heights. The bill would also promote the U.S. conducting “joint projects” with Israel in the Golan, including “industrial research and development.”
As expected, Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is facing major internal challenges, welcomed Trump’s decision right away, calling it “bold.”
“At a time when Iran seeks to use Syria as a platform to destroy Israel, President Trump boldly recognizes Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights. Thank you President Trump,” the Israeli PM wrote on Twitter.
Netanyahu has been advocating for the annexation of the Golan Heights in the U.S. and the West in general for more than a year now.
The decision to recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the occupied Syrian Golan Heights, if happened, will likely led to further growth of tensions in the Middle East. Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital in 2017 led to an ongoing wave of violence in the Gaza Strip and the Western Bank.
- With Oil, Water and Iran as Targets, US on Brink of Recognizing Israeli Sovereignty over Golan Heights