'The US ambassador to Israel says Washington could recognize the occupied side of Syria’s Golan Heights as Israeli territory, as the administration of President Donald Trump speeds up its support for the regime’s widely-criticized land theft policies.
In fresh controversial comments to Israel’s Hayom daily, David Friedman said he expects the Golan Heights could remain under Israel’s grip “forever.”
“I cannot honestly imagine a situation in which the Golan Heights is not part of Israel forever,” Friedman said in the interview the excerpts of which were released on Thursday, adding, “I cannot imagine a situation in which the Golan Heights is returned to Syria.”
Friedman’s remarks contradicted those by US National Security Advisor John Bolton, who said late last month that the Trump administration was not discussing possible US recognition of Israel’s annexation of the occupied Syrian territory.
Asked about that contradiction, the US envoy said Bolton was describing the current situation and not the future stance of the US on this issue.
Israel seized some two thirds of the rocky plateau in southwestern Syria during the 1967 Six-Day War.
Syria once tried to retake the territory in 1973, but it failed to do so despite inflicting heavy losses on the Israeli military. The two sides signed an armistice a year later while a UN peacekeeping force was deployed to the region to monitor the ceasefire.'
Read more: ‘US may recognize Israel’s annexation of Syria’s Golan’
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