haaretz & COLlive
U.S. President Donald Trump took to Twitter on Thursday evening to state that it was time the United States recognized Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights, territory it occupied in the 1967 war.
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!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 21, 2019
Last week the U.S. State Department scraped the word “occupied” when referring to the Golan Heights in its annual human rights report for 2018. The change, which now reads “Israeli-controlled territory” strays from the language used by previous administrations.
A separate section on the West Bank and Gaza Strip — areas that Israel captured along with the Golan Heights during the Six-Day War in 1967 — also did not refer to those territories as being “occupied” or under “occupation.”
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warmly welcomed the move. “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!”
Trump’s announcement was made at a symbolic occasion as Jews in Israel and around the world celebrate Purim. The holiday commemorates the salvation of the Jews from the evil plot to anihilate them in ancient Perssia – modern day Iran.