(PT) A member of Congress has urged the US to recognize Syria’s Golan Heights as an Israeli territory after Washington's relocation of its embassy to Jerusalem al-Quds last week.
Republican Representative Ron DeSantis said in an interview published on Israel’s Walla news website on Sunday that he had brought the proposal before the House Foreign Affairs Committee, of which he is a member.
|Ron DeSantis- Israel firster|
Israel seized the Golan Heights from Syria during the 1967 Six-Day War and has continued to occupy two-thirds of the strategically-important territory ever since, in a move that has never been recognized by the international community.
DeSantis also said the proposal is a natural follow-up to the US embassy’s relocation from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem al-Quds last Monday.
He noted that as the embassy move would help take Jerusalem al-Quds off the negotiating table, the US recognition of Israel’s claim to the Golan would clarify it has no intention of forcing Tel Aviv to relinquish the territory.
|Bnei Yehuda, an Israeli settlement built in the occupied Syrian territory, southern Golan Heights.|
(AS) According to a report by the Washington Free Beacon Thursday, the proposal describes the Golan Heights as an “integral part” of Israel, and recognizes that it is “crucial” for Israel to retain the strategically important area overlooking the Sea of Galilee.
"It is the sense of the Congress that the Golan Heights represent an integral part of the state of Israel and are crucial to the ability of Israel to safeguard its borders and maintain its existence," the proposal reads in part.
The draft drawn up by DeSantis also cites the ongoing Syrian civil war and Iran’s use of Syria as a forward base for attacks on Israel as justification for recognizing Israeli sovereignty over the Golan.
"Given the civil war in Syria and the expansion of Iranian influence in Syria, the United States should recognize Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights."
The measure proposed by Rep. DeSantis has been given to the Republican-dominated House Rules Committee, which must decide whether to advance or quash the bill. The committee is headed by Texas Congressman Pete Sessions, a long-time supporter of Israel, and includes 11 Republican lawmakers and 4 Democrats.
|Nimrod's Castle Israeli Occupied Syrian Territory|