Trump recognition of Golan Heights as Israeli receives global condemnation

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Several countries condemned on Friday US President Donald Trump’s recognition of Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights.

The Gulf Cooperation Council expressed its concern about the US president's stance, while the European Union underlined that it does not recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights on Friday after Trump's statement over the territory viewed by European allies as occupied.

“The position of the EU has not changed,” an EU spokeswoman told Reuters.

“The European Union, in line with international law, does not recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the territories occupied by Israel since June 1967, including the Golan Heights and does not consider them to be part of Israel’s territory.”

A German government spokeswoman rejected unilateral steps and said Israel’s annexation of the Golan Heights is invalid under UN resolutions.

Russia’s Foreign Ministry and the Syrian government also condemned Trump’s statement.

The Russian Foreign Ministry said that a change in the status of the Golan Heights would be a direct violation of UN decisions, RIA news agency said in a report citing ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova.

The Syrian government said it was determined to recover the area “through all available means.”

Syria's state news agency reported that a Syrian foreign ministry source said Trump’s statement showed “the blind bias of the United States” towards Israel. The statements did not change “the reality that the Golan was and will remain Syrian, Arab,” it read.

“The Syrian nation is more determined to liberate this precious piece of Syrian national land through all available means,” the report said.

Egypt said on Friday it considers the Golan Heights as occupied Syrian land, also rejecting Trump’s statement.

In a statement carried by state news agency MENA, the Egyptian Foreign Ministry cited UN Security Council resolution 497 of 1981 which rejected Israel’s annexation of the territory.

The ministry “stressed the importance that everybody should respect the resolutions of international legitimacy and the United Nations Charter in respect of the inadmissibility of acquiring land by force,” the statement read.

France’s Foreign Ministry also said that it does not recognize the Israeli annexation of the Golan Heights and its recognition - as called for by US President Donald Trump - is contrary to international law.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Friday also warned that Trump’s pledge to recognize Israel’s disputed annexation of the Golan Heights would risk a “new crisis.”

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