Iran to ‘resist’ Trump decision on Golan Heights
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Iran to ‘resist’ Trump decision on Golan Heights

President Rouhani joins condemnation of US president’s recognition of Israeli sovereignty over strategic plateau, says shift in policy ‘tramples international regulations’

US President Donald Trump (L) and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hold up a Golan Heights proclamation outside the West Wing after a meeting at the White House on March 25, 2019, in Washington. (Brendan Smialowski/AFP)
US President Donald Trump (L) and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hold up a Golan Heights proclamation outside the West Wing after a meeting at the White House on March 25, 2019, in Washington. (Brendan Smialowski/AFP)

TEHRAN — Iran’s president said Friday that Iranians would “resist” the Trump administration’s acceptance of Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights, adding his voice to many Arab nations, including a number of US allies, who have denounced the US decision.

Hassan Rouhani said the US move is “trampling on international regulations about the Golan.” Iranians too “should resist and that way gain victory” over the US and Israel, he said.

Israel captured the strategic plateau from Syria in the 1967 Six Day War and in 1981 effectively annexed the area, in a move never recognized by the international community, which considers the Golan Heights to be occupied Syrian territory.

US President Donald Trump’s formal recognition last week of Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan sparked widespread international condemnation. The announcement was a major shift in American policy and gave Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu a needed political boost ahead of April elections.

Syria and many other Arab states slammed Trump’s move.

President Hassan Rouhani, center, speaks during a media briefing after a cabinet meeting, as senior Vice President Eshaq Jahangiri, left, and Defense Minister Gen. Amir Hatami listen, in Tehran, Iran, March 18, 2019. (Iranian Presidency Office via AP)

Meeting in the Turkish Mediterranean coastal city of Antalya on Friday, the Turkish and Russian foreign ministers also denounced the decision.

“I feel this is the conscious, deliberate demonstration of permissiveness,” Russia’s Sergei Lavrov told reporters at a joint news conference. “Such demonstration of permissiveness, along with intimidations, ultimatums and sanctions, are basically the toolkit which the US use in foreign policy. It is sad.”

Turkey’s top diplomat, Mevlut Cavusoglu, said the decision “does not add to the region’s peace and stability, on the contrary, it creates unrest and chaos in the region.”

“It is out of the question for us to accept and recognize such a decision,” he added.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Thursday the decision is a reminder to Arab and Muslim countries that US and Israel “will steal your lands.”

A member of the Syrian security forces walks near the border post with Israel in the Syrian town of Quneitra on the Golan Heights on March 26, 2019. (Louai Beshara/AFP)

Iran doesn’t recognize Israel and supports terrorist groups sworn to its destruction, like Hamas in the Gaza Strip and Hezbollah in Lebanon.

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