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Netanyahu asked Trump to recognize Israeli sovereignty over Golan Heights

FILE: Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, center, talks with Israeli soldiers at a military outpost during a visit at Mount Hermon in the Israeli-controlled Golan Heights overlooking the Israel-Syria border on Wednesday, Feb. 4, 2015.
(AP Photo/Baz Ratner, Pool)

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu asked the United States to recognize Israeli sovereignty over Golan Heights as part of Washington’s decision to pull out its troops from Syria, Channel 10 reported on Sunday.

The report, which cited an Israeli official as the source, came shortly after Netanyahu explained US National Security adviser John Bolton the importance of the Golan Heights for Israel’s security.

“When you’re there, you’ll understand why we’ll never leave the Golan Heights, and why it’s important for all countries to recognize Israeli sovereignty,” Netanyahu told Bolton during a joint press conference on Sunday.

Bolton is supposed to accompany Netanyahu on a trip to the Israeli annexed Golan Heights on Monday as long as the weather allows for such a trip.

The Golan Heights were captured by Israel from Syria in the 1967 six day war, and finally annexed by Israel in 1981 during Menachem Begin’s period as prime minister.

“The law, jurisdiction and administration of the State (of Israel) will take effect in the Golan Heights,” read the Golan Heights Law which passed in 1981.

Sebastian Scheiner (POOL/AFP)

Israel often calls on the international community to recognize its sovereignty over the Golan Heights, which it is yet to do.

Since the Syrian civil war broke out in 2011, the Golan Heights have been seen as an integral part of Israel’s security, due to the turmoil and instability on the Syrian side of the border.

Israel has stepped up its airstrikes against Iranian targets in Syria after it became evident that the Islamic Republic is attempting to establish a permanent military presence in the country when the war is over.

“Israel on the Golan Heights is a solid reality based on ancient rights. Israel on the Golan Heights is a fact that the international community must recognize and as long as it depends on me the Golan Heights will always remain under Israeli sovereignty because otherwise we would have Iran and Hezbollah on the shores of the Kinneret,” Netanyahu said in October.

Israeli lawmakers are generally in consensus about the need for the international community to recognize Israel’s sovereignty in the disputed territory.

In May, the Yesh Atid party’s leader, Yair Lapid, toured the Golan Heights with 40 diplomats from around the world, asking them to recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the northern territory.

JALAA MAREY (AFP)

Lapid was joined by diplomats from Great Britain, Canada, France, Japan, Mexico, Norway, Italy, Argentina among others, and stated that Israel will not give back the territory to a “mass murderer”, referring to Syria’s Bashar al-Assad.

“We came here to show them the complexity of the northern arena, in which (in addition to Lebanon on another side, there is) Syria on one side, which is having more and more Iranian boots on the ground as they deploy in the territory and Hezbollah, the biggest terror organization on earth, aiming at us more than 100,000 missiles in long range, middle range – and some of them accurate,” Lapid said.

“We wanted to tell the (diplomats) that Israel doesn’t want to go to war but if the Iranians establish themselves in Syria, the war will be inevitable. Now we can see how ridiculous and absurd the idea is that Israel will evacuate the Golan Heights and give it to a mass murderer who is cooperating with Iran and Hezbollah,” the Israeli lawmaker concluded.

The same month, the Jerusalem Post obtained a letter from Yoav Kisch, a member of Netanyahu’s Likud party, to US ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, in which he stated that a US recognition of the Golan Heights would be a natural continuation of the current US policy in the region.

“In 1981, Israel declared sovereignty over the Golan Heights. The Golan Heights has since developed and became an inseparable part of Israel. Today, facing a reality in which the borders of Syria are redefined, a US declaration supporting the Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights is imperative,” Kisch wrote Friedman.

Comments

(1)

Otherwise what would be the sense of hvg war?!!!

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