Donald Trump backs Israel's disputed territorial claims ahead of Netanyahu US trip

Greece-Cyprus-Israel summit in Jerusalem

Since 1974, the UN Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) has monitored the ceasefire between Syria and Israel, and patrolled the demarcation line between Syrian and Israeli-controlled areas of the Golan.

"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!" he wrote.

"If some (thing) will happen from Lebanon toward Israel, we will hold Lebanon as the responsible (party)", Rivlin said.

Trump's abrupt announcement was immediately cheered by Netanyahu, who faces a tough reelection battle and visits Washington next week.

Within minutes, Netanyahu tweeted "Thank You President Trump!" Water from the Golan travels to the Sea of Galilee and the Jordan River. In recent years, Israel has carried out many airstrikes in Syria to halt what it says are Iranian arms transfers to the Hezbollah militant group, and to prevent Iran from establishing a permanent military presence in the country.

Trump's announcement came as Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is in Jerusalem, lauding warm ties with Israel and promising to step up pressure on Iran. While Pompeo said this was "not a change in US policy", he said that the language used in the Human Rights Report was used "with great intentionality".

"At a time when Iran seeks to use Syria as a platform to destroy Israel, @POTUS Trump boldly recognizes Israeli sovereignty in the Golan Heights".

French-built Israeli tanks in action in this
French-built Israeli tanks in action in this

"This is a long-term relationship and an incredibly important one to both countries and we have to get this right, we have to get this right always and we can't let election schedules drive the work we are doing together", he said.

Netanyahu has repeatedly pressed for the U.S.to recognize Israeli governance in that region.

In addition to the Jerusalem recognition, the administration also has cut hundreds of millions of dollars in aid to the Palestinians, helping fuel a financial crisis for Abbas' Palestinian Authority.

The Palestinians have pre-emptively rejected a peace plan the White House is said to be preparing, saying that the Trump administration is unfairly biased toward Israel.

Trump will host Netanyahu at the White House next Monday and Tuesday.

"I was looking at the border wall as though I was in Chihuahuita looking at Mexico and talking to people who lived in that village and what they experienced this last summer and learning from them how they literally watched rockets arching over their heads, northbound", O'Rourke said.

In Israel, Pompeo also attended a summit of Mediterranean natural gas producers Israel, Cyprus and Greece.

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