Golan Heights: Syria condemns Donald Trump's remarks

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan makes a speech during an emergency meeting of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation in Istanbul Turkey

Analysts say Trump's move could help Netanyahu in the midst of a tough reelection battle.

Trump's foreign policy team did not respond favorably to similar requests regarding the Golan Heights previous year, expressing frustration with Israeli officials for pressuring them over a major policy change so shortly after the administration recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

On Thursday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo compared President Donald Trump to the biblical Queen Esther, who saved the Jewish people from the wicked Haman.

Iran said the announcement was "illegal and unacceptable", and Russian Federation pointed out that a change of the status of the Golan Heights would be a direct violation of United Nations resolutions. In May 2018, Mr. Trump withdrew the USA from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, known as the "Iran deal", brokered by the Obama administration, calling it "a terrible one-sided deal". If the US recognizes Israel's control of the Golan Heights, it could be used as a justification for Russia's annexation of Crimea or even Israel's claim over parts of the West Bank, some argue. Earlier this week, Pompeo held a briefing with reporters that caused controversy after a State Department press corps reporter was reportedly disinvited after being told the call was for "faith-based media". But Trump said his decision was a long time coming and it wasn't about Netanyahu and Israeli politics.

Iran also condemned Mr Trump's comments.

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The Palestinians have sought to claim east Jerusalem as its capital of an eventual independent state, but Israel also considers Jerusalem as its eternal and indivisible capital.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Trump's "unfortunate" declaration has brought the region 'to the brink of a new crisis and new tensions'. "They're going to fail again", Netanyahu said.

While previous secretaries of state have traditionally met with the Palestinians when visiting the region, Mr Pompeo has no such talks planned.

Why is the area contentious?

US officials are preparing an official document that would recognize the Golan Heights as a sovereign Israeli territory, which US President Donald Trump is likely to sign next week, Reuters reported on Friday. "Add this to the Embassy move to Jerusalem, signing the Taylor Force Act into law, fighting against anti-Israel & anti-Semitic hate at the United Nations & elsewhere, & withdrawing from the flawed Iran deal!", he tweeted.

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Syria tried to regain the Heights in the 1973 Middle East war, but was thwarted.

Many of the Golan Druze continue to swear loyalty to Syria, partly out of fear that if the Golan were ever returned to Damascus they could face reprisals from the Assad regime if they were seen to have collaborated with Israel.

Israel has built dozens of settlements in the Golan over the years, with an estimated 26,000 Jewish settlers living there as of 2019.

The strategic plateau (pictured in file image) was seized from Syria by Israel in the 1967 Six-Day War and has been disputed ever since. It also said that the Golan Heights will remain Arabian and Syrian regardless of the U-S president's recent remarks.

Both sides covet the Golan's water resources and naturally fertile soil.

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Switching between devices while listening to music on is also reported to be two times faster thanks to improved connection times. Apple also added wireless charging to the case so you can plop your AirPods down on any Qi charging pad for a quick recharge.

Palestinians fear the acceptance of Israel's claim to the Golan will act as a stepping stone to United States recognition of another territory it captured in the same 1967 war and continues to rule - the occupied West Bank.

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