Friday, December 1, 2023

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    After Israeli reports and comment, the Biden administration clarifies its position on the Golan

    The US State Department said on Friday that Washington’s policy on the Golan Heights has not changed, describing reports to the contrary as “false.”

    The ministry published a tweet, Friday, in response to reports claiming that the United States might cancel the decision of the administration of former US President Donald Trump, to recognize Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights.

    Also in the context of reactions, Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid said on Friday that the Golan Heights is a strategic asset for Israel, according to what was reported by the Jerusalem Post.

    Lapid added, “Those who spread rumors about the United States canceling its recognition of the Golan Heights are harming our security and sovereignty, and are ready to inflict real harm on the State of Israel and its relations with the United States, just to harm the new government.”

    And the ” Washington Free Beacon ” website said that the Joe Biden administration is about to reverse the decision of former President Donald Trump, which recognized Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights.

    Israeli media widely reported what was reported by the American website.

    The Israeli newspaper ” Jorzlium Post ” said that it only took one report in the “Washington Free Beacon” about the possible intention of the Biden administration to revoke US recognition of the Golan Heights for the Israeli media to announce this as a reality.

    In March 2019, Trump recognized Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan lands, which Israel occupied in 1967 and annexed in 1981.

    Last February, US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said he supported, under the current circumstances, Israel’s control of the Golan Heights, but cast doubt on the legitimacy of the Trump administration’s decision to recognize Israeli sovereignty over the strategic plateau.

    In an interview with CNN, Blinken was asked whether the Biden administration would continue to view the Golan as part of Israel after the administration of former President Donald Trump recognized Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights, which Israel occupied from Syria in 1967.

    Blinken replied, “Look, leaving aside the legal aspects of this question, in practice, the Golan is very important to Israel’s security. As long as Assad is in power in Syria, and as long as Iran is in Syria, so are the armed groups backed by Iran and the Assad regime itself.” – All of these pose a major security threat to Israel, and in practice, the control of the Golan in this situation remains of real importance to Israel’s security. The legal aspect is something else. Over time, if the situation in Syria changes, that is something we will consider. But we are not close to that.

    Israel and Syria are still at war, despite the establishment of a demilitarized border zone through an armistice agreement. This border remained calm for a relatively long period until the beginning of the conflict in Syria in 2011.

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