Pompeo boosts Israel's Netanyahu before election

Donald Trump

In a tweet Thursday, Trump said that after 52 years, it's important for the United States for fully recognize Israel's control over what he says is an area of "critical strategic and security importance to Israel" and stability in the region.

Shortly after entering office in January 2017, U.S. President Donald Trump visited the Western Wall, though without Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Israel occupied east Jerusalem in the 1967 Six-Day War and later annexed it in a move never recognised by the worldwide community.

Netanyahu's trip comes two weeks before Israel's general elections on April 9, in which he faces a formidable opponent in Benny Gantz, a former chief of staff of the Israeli army, now leading in his Blue and White Party in several Israeli polls.

Like the Trump administration's decision to move the USA embassy to Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, this will be seen as another demonstration of its unreserved support for Israel, and for Mr Netanyahu in particular.

A spokesman for Palestinian National Authority President Mahmoud Abbas called that decision 'a continuation of the hostile approach of the American administration toward our Palestinian people'.

Trump's move is pure and unadulterated domestic politics - helping Netanyahu get reelected is great for Trump's politics; but it's not a compelling United States national interest. Thank you President Trump!

Trump's strong support for Israel has been a subject of debate in the United States.

Netanyahu, who is embroiled in a fierce re-election campaign ahead of April 9 voting, smiled broadly while delivering his own remarks.

Many are ascribing the decision to reelection hopes, of both Netanyahu and Trump.

Israel took the western two-thirds of the Golan Heights in 1967, but the eastern third has remained under Syrian control. His trip to Israel, three weeks before a closely contested election, was portrayed in local media as a Trump administration boost for the right-wing Netanyahu.

The plan, which has drawn widespread skepticism even before its unveiling, is intended not only to bring Israelis and Palestinians to the negotiating table but also draw Israel closer to its USA -allied Arab neighbors. "It's time that the U.S. and the worldwide community recognize that Israel is staying on the Golan and the fact that the Golan will always remain part of the State of Israel", the prime minster said.

What wasn't controlled by Israel was controlled by the Syrian government before their civil war.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is now in the midst of his most hard reelection thus far and has long called for US recognition of the Golan, took to Twitter to celebrate the news.

Netanyahu believes that Trump's decision came at a crucial time "when Iran is trying to use Syria as a platform to attack and destroy Israel".

Syrian officials denounced the comments, calling them arrogant. "While they are claiming to be trying to solve the conflict, such acts only make it more hard to resolve", he said. Now, Trump's intended recognition could actually have negative repercussions for Israel's standing in the region.

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