- The US has officially recognized Israel's sovereignty over the 1967 Golan Heights conquered by Syria.
- US President Trump signed a declaration in the presence of Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu.
- Turkey and Russia in particular criticize this step.
US President Donald Trump has signed a decree recognizing the affiliation of Syria's annexed Golan Heights to Israel. The ceremony took place during a visit by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to the White House.
Trump spoke of a historic move, setting it up with the protection of Israel from enemy attacks from the Golan Heights. Netanyahu spoke of a historic day. "Israel never had a better friend than you," he told Trump.
The US president had announced his move to the Golan Heights last week with a tweet and caused a stir internationally. The Israeli government, on the other hand, was enthusiastic about the news. On the other hand, it was criticized by the Arab side as well as by Turkey and Russia. Syria rated Trump's attack as irresponsible.
Israel had conquered the Golan Heights, a strategically important rock plateau above the Sea of Galilee, in 1967 and annexed it in 1981. This has not been recognized internationally until today. According to international law, the territories are considered Israeli-occupied territory of Syria.
Netanyahu: Trump's move is an act of historical justice
Netanyahu had long sought international recognition of the Golan Heights as Israeli. Shortly before the parliamentary elections in Israel, which are scheduled for April 9, the Israeli Prime Minister got this long-cherished wish now fulfilled by Trump. Netanyahu said the Golan Heights are more important than ever for Israel's security. He called Trump's move an act of historical justice. Originally Netanyahu had wanted to meet again on Tuesday evening for a dinner with Trump. An appearance at the annual meeting of the Israeli-American lobby organization Aipac in Washington had been planned. After a rocket attack on a house northeast of Tel Aviv, however, Netanyahu had announced that he would shorten his visit to the US and return home immediately after his meeting with Trump on Monday.
Netanyahu told the White House that Israel will not tolerate such attacks. Trump also expressed concern over the recent attack and said they did not want to see another such attack on Israel. The Golan Heights would be a potential starting point for such attacks, he said in support of his decision.