ANKARA (Rahnuma) : The Iranian Foreign Ministry has criticized a Thursday tweet by U.S. President Donald Trump in which he said it was “time” for the U.S. to “fully recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights”.
Israel occupied Syria’s Golan Heights during the 1967 Arab-Israeli War. It later “annexed” the territory in 1981 in a move unanimously rejected at the time by the UN Security Council.
“This decision regarding a sensitive region will lead to a fresh crisis,” Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qasemi said in a statement.
“The Israeli regime has no right to Arab and Muslim territories,” he added, calling for an “immediate end” to Israel’s decades-long occupation of Arab land, including the Golan Heights.
In a Thursday tweet, Trump declared: “After 52 years [since the war] 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!”
Notably, the U.S. State Department last week officially referred to the Golan Heights as an “Israeli-controlled” territory. Previously, it had consistently referred to the region as “Israeli-occupied”.
And last November, the U.S. — for the first time — voted against an annual UN resolution condemning Israel’s continued occupation of the Golan.
While 151 countries voted in support of the resolution, only Israel and the U.S. voted against it.
Writing By Mahmoud Barakat