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Blinken stops short of endorsing Trump recognition of Golan Heights as Israel


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Blinken stops short of endorsing Trump recognition of Golan Heights as Israel

 

2021-02-09T004559Z_1_LYNXMPEH18016_RTROPTP_4_USA-SAUDI-POLITICS.JPG

FILE PHOTO: Newly confirmed U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken removes his face mask as he arrives to hold his first press briefing at the State Department in Washington, U.S., January 27, 2021. REUTERS/Carlos Barria/Pool/File Photo

 

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Monday stopped short of endorsing the Trump administration's recognition of the occupied Golan Heights as part of Israel, instead noting that the territory was important for Israel's security.

 

Former President Donald Trump officially granted U.S. recognition of the Golan as Israeli territory in 2019 - a dramatic shift from decades of U.S. policy. Israel captured the Golan from Syria in the 1967 Middle East war and annexed it in 1981 in a move that is not recognised internationally.

 

"As a practical matter, the control of the Golan in that situation I think remains of real importance to Israel’s security," Blinken told CNN. "Legal questions are something else and over time if the situation were to change in Syria, that's something we look at, but we are nowhere near that."

 

He added that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's government as well as the presence of militia groups backed by Iran pose a 'significant security threat' to Israel.

 

Biden’s advisers had said previously that he would not withdraw U.S. recognition of Israeli sovereignty over the Golan.

 

Blinken also reiterated the Biden administration's commitment to keep the U.S. embassy in Jerusalem, after the Trump administration recognised the city as the capital of Israel, reversing previous U.S. policy.

 

Trump was broadly in lockstep on Middle East policy with his closest ally in the region, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

 

Biden and his team have said they will restore ties with the Palestinians that were cut by Trump, resume aid and reject unilateral actions, such as construction of Israeli settlements on occupied territory.

 

Biden’s failure to speak with Netanyahu so far among his calls with foreign leaders has raised eyebrows in Israel and among Middle East experts. Obama and Trump both spoke to him within days of taking office.

 

When asked why Biden has not spoken with Netanyahu, Blinken said: "I'm sure that they'll have occasion to speak in the near future."

 

(Reporting by Humeyra Pamuk and Simon Lewis; Additional reporting by Matt Spetalnick; Editing by Sonya Hepinstall)

 

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-- © Copyright Reuters 2021-02-09
 
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59 minutes ago, webfact said:

Biden and his team have said they will restore ties with the Palestinians that were cut by Trump, resume aid and reject unilateral actions, such as construction of Israeli settlements on occupied territory.

 

Biden’s failure to speak with Netanyahu so far among his calls with foreign leaders has raised eyebrows in Israel and among Middle East experts. Obama and Trump both spoke to him within days of taking office.

 

Good. The US has sheltered Israel far too much over the decades. It is not anti-semetic to point out the British truly ruined that area of the world by evicting the Palestinians and giving the land to Israel.

 

Israel can claim to be surrounded by enemies, or they could admit that it's a situation of their own making. Taking someone else's country was never going to end well.

 

It's about time that this US-Israel relationship was re-set. Peace could never come about when the 'arbiter' of the peace deal is only worried about what one side thinks.

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31 minutes ago, 2530Ubon said:

 

Good. The US has sheltered Israel far too much over the decades. It is not anti-semetic to point out the British truly ruined that area of the world by evicting the Palestinians and giving the land to Israel.

 

Israel can claim to be surrounded by enemies, or they could admit that it's a situation of their own making. Taking someone else's country was never going to end well.

 

It's about time that this US-Israel relationship was re-set. Peace could never come about when the 'arbiter' of the peace deal is only worried about what one side thinks.

Your historical narrative has more holes than a colander.

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1 hour ago, Jingthing said:

Your historical narrative has more holes than a colander.

Well I didn't want to write an essay, but what I wrote is true. Brits gave the land to the Jewish people - and they made short work kicking out all of the Arabs from their homes.

 

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1 minute ago, 2530Ubon said:

Well I didn't want to write an essay, but what I wrote is true. Brits gave the land to the Jewish people - and they made short work kicking out all of the Arabs from their homes.

More spin in that narrative than an electric dreidel.

 

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1 hour ago, 2530Ubon said:

 

Good. The US has sheltered Israel far too much over the decades. It is not anti-semetic to point out the British truly ruined that area of the world by evicting the Palestinians and giving the land to Israel.

 

Israel can claim to be surrounded by enemies, or they could admit that it's a situation of their own making. Taking someone else's country was never going to end well.

 

It's about time that this US-Israel relationship was re-set. Peace could never come about when the 'arbiter' of the peace deal is only worried about what one side thinks.

 

The British did not 'evict' the Palestinians, and Israel came about following a UN resolution. The same resolution which recognized the Palestinians' right for a state (as in they never had one prior, either).

 

Israel didn't take someone else's country, other than in narratives such as yours. Funny enough, the two neighboring countries Israel got peace with are exactly the two more relevant to the Palestinian issue -- Egypt and Jordan.

 

Unless you read another OP, the relations between the countries are nowhere near being 're-set'.

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27 minutes ago, Morch said:

 

The British did not 'evict' the Palestinians, and Israel came about following a UN resolution. The same resolution which recognized the Palestinians' right for a state (as in they never had one prior, either).

 

Israel didn't take someone else's country, other than in narratives such as yours. Funny enough, the two neighboring countries Israel got peace with are exactly the two more relevant to the Palestinian issue -- Egypt and Jordan.

 

Unless you read another OP, the relations between the countries are nowhere near being 're-set'.

 

Ridiculous. Of course Palestine was a country.


https://www.history.com/topics/middle-east/palestine

 

Quote

 

When World War I ended in 1918, the British took control of Palestine. The League of Nations issued a British mandate for Palestine—a document that gave Britain administrative control over the region, and included provisions for establishing a Jewish national homeland in Palestine—which went into effect in 1923.

The Partition of Palestine

In 1947, after more than two decades of British rule, the United Nations proposed a plan to partition Palestine into two sections: an independent Jewish state and an independent Arab state. The city of Jerusalem, which was claimed as a capital by both Jews and Palestinian Arabs, was to be an international territory with a special status. 

Jewish leaders accepted the plan, but many Palestinian Arabs—some of whom had been actively fighting British and Jewish interests in the region since the 1920s—vehemently opposed it.

 

 

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19 minutes ago, 2530Ubon said:

 

Ridiculous. Of course Palestine was a country.


https://www.history.com/topics/middle-east/palestine

 

 

 

Yawn.

 

The British did not 'evict' the Palestinians. Give it a rest.

There was no Palestinian country in the sense that the current people calling them Palestinians had anything to do with it. This canard been done to death on this topic as well.

 

Unless you missed it, the topic is about the Golan Heights - not quite what you're on about anyway.

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I see this discussion falling into an area where neither side is will to listen to a differing opinion, sounds like the Kinesit to me.

I will check back next year to see how the discussion is going.

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1 minute ago, RJRS1301 said:

I see this discussion falling into an area where neither side is will to listen to a differing opinion, sounds like the Kinesit to me.

I will check back next year to see how the discussion is going.

Suggest a decade

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5 hours ago, Morch said:

 

Yawn.

 

The British did not 'evict' the Palestinians. Give it a rest.

There was no Palestinian country in the sense that the current people calling them Palestinians had anything to do with it. This canard been done to death on this topic as well.

 

Unless you missed it, the topic is about the Golan Heights - not quite what you're on about anyway.

There was als no country called Israel before until the UN created one on the land that was settled mainly by Palestinians back then! 

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9 minutes ago, pacovl46 said:

There was als no country called Israel before until the UN created one on the land that was settled mainly by Palestinians back then! 

 

Yes, there was. Many many years ago, but still.

Either way, let me point out again, this topic is about the Golan Heights.

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48 minutes ago, Morch said:

 

Yes, there was. Many many years ago, but still.

Either way, let me point out again, this topic is about the Golan Heights.

No, It wasn't. It had been referred to as the 'land of israel' or 'the holy land' by some in the past, but it was never a country called Israel. It has been called Palestine for a very very very long time.

 

The UN resolution also stated to partition "Palestine" - Why on earth would they call it Palestine if it wasn't? Surely they would have said Partition Israel if your view was correct no?

 

This topic is about the Golan Heights, the Biden Administration, and it's future political relationship with Israel. Nothing wrong with pointing out that this whole thing was started by evicting Palestinians from their homes - especially when they keep land grabbing and evicting more, such as the Golan Heights

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44 minutes ago, 2530Ubon said:

No, It wasn't. It had been referred to as the 'land of israel' or 'the holy land' by some in the past, but it was never a country called Israel. It has been called Palestine for a very very very long time.

 

The UN resolution also stated to partition "Palestine" - Why on earth would they call it Palestine if it wasn't? Surely they would have said Partition Israel if your view was correct no?

 

This topic is about the Golan Heights, the Biden Administration, and it's future political relationship with Israel. Nothing wrong with pointing out that this whole thing was started by evicting Palestinians from their homes - especially when they keep land grabbing and evicting more, such as the Golan Heights

 

I think you need to brush your ancient history some.

The UN resolution referred  to 'Palestine' because that's what the area was called at the time. It does not imply that there was a country, or even a people referred to as Palestinians. The would-be Israelis officially announced their country's name about 6 months after the UN resolution (there were several other suggestions)

 

The Golan Heights are largely unrelated to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It's not a territory claimed by the Palestinians, even.

 

It's kinda sad we need go through this naming nonsense over and over again.

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30 minutes ago, Morch said:

I think you need to brush your ancient history some

Probably! I may consider myself well read, but it's not my area of expertise.

 

Anyway, I do hope the US under President Biden starts to be more fair minded. Personally I think another country should take the helm as the US, especially under Trump, has done enough damage by being completely one sided in it's negotiations.

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10 minutes ago, 2530Ubon said:

Probably! I may consider myself well read, but it's not my area of expertise.

 

Anyway, I do hope the US under President Biden starts to be more fair minded. Personally I think another country should take the helm as the US, especially under Trump, has done enough damage by being completely one sided in it's negotiations.

 

I think the USA will go back to how things were before Trump, with some things carrying over anyway (like the USA embassy moving to Jerusalem, the birthplace registration). Other things will be undone with time (UNRWA funding, PA funding, and cooperation with Israeli organizations based in the Occupied Territories). Other things, like the Golan Heights recognition are problematic, but less pressing to address at this time.

 

I also anticipate that the Biden administration will achieve certain concessions from the Palestinians for the reversal of such policies - no propaganda/hate speech stuff on UNRWA materials, a change in how prisoners' family allowances are handed, a full return of the security cooperation with Israel etc. Some will take more time and effort than others, but I think that's where it's heading.

 

As for 'another country' taking the helm - doesn't work this way. Sides need to accept said country as mediator, and said country needs to have the clout and the stamina to handle things. Don't see any serious contender out there.

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8 hours ago, Morch said:

 

I think you need to brush your ancient history some.

The UN resolution referred  to 'Palestine' because that's what the area was called at the time. It does not imply that there was a country, or even a people referred to as Palestinians. The would-be Israelis officially announced their country's name about 6 months after the UN resolution (there were several other suggestions)

 

The Golan Heights are largely unrelated to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It's not a territory claimed by the Palestinians, even.

 

It's kinda sad we need go through this naming nonsense over and over again.

The Golan Heights very much is part of the ongoing conflict , it was seized terriotory by Israel during the 67 war

Recognized as Syrian territory occupied by Israel,
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13 hours ago, Morch said:

 

Yes, there was. Many many years ago, but still.

Either way, let me point out again, this topic is about the Golan Heights.

What, like 2000 years ago? Back in the 1940s there was no country called Israel on the map. That’s a fact! 

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7 hours ago, RJRS1301 said:

The Golan Heights very much is part of the ongoing conflict , it was seized terriotory by Israel during the 67 war

Recognized as Syrian territory occupied by Israel,

 

It's basically an issue between Israel and Syria. Not a whole lot to do with the Palestinians. In past times, maybe, there was this notion of solidarity (as in not signing agreements with Israel until the Palestinian issue is resolved), but that's a long gone concept by now. Egypt and Jordan got peace agreements with Israel, Lebanon is currently in the process of negotiations on the countries' maritime border, and other Arab countries make their long standing unofficial relations with Israel public (like the UAE). Even with regard to Syria - there were several attempts at covert negotiations aimed at resolving the Golan Heights issue.

 

I'm not arguing that Israel is holding the Golan Heights legally, just that this is largely unrelated to the other issues cited in some comments above.

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Spelling police post removed

 

Also now several off topic posts degrading into bickering, topic is about:

 

Blinken stops short of endorsing Trump recognition of Golan Heights as Israel

 

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