Ireland to withdraw forces from UN observer force on Israel-Syria border

Emanuel (Mannie) Fabian is The Times of Israel's military correspondent

Members of UNDOF, the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force, use binoculars to watch Syrian positions from the Israeli Golan Heights on August 31, 2014. (AFP/Menahem Kahana)
Members of UNDOF, the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force, use binoculars to watch Syrian positions from the Israeli Golan Heights on August 31, 2014. (AFP/Menahem Kahana)

Ireland will be withdrawing its forces from a UN peacekeeping force between Israel and Syria in the Golan Heights, Irish officials say.

In a statement, Irish defense minister Micheál Martin informs the government that the 130 infantry troops stationed on the Syrian side of the border as part of the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) will be withdrawn in the near future.

Martin says the decision is made based on an “assessment of the sustainability of the [Irish military’s] overseas commitments.”

The exact date of the withdrawal will be discussed with UN officials.

The UNDOF monitors a 1974 ceasefire between Israel and Syria on the Golan Heights. Its troops also include members from Nepal, India, Uruguay, Fiji, Ghana, the Czech Republic and Bhutan.

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