Syria slams Trump statement on Israel sovereignty in Golan

Syria slams Trump statement on Israel sovereignty in Golan
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, left, shakes hands with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, during their visit to Netanyahu's official residence in Jerusalem, Thursday March 21, 2019. Netanyahu has praised U.S. President Donald Trump's recognition of its control over the Golan Heights as a holiday "miracle." (Amir Cohen/Pool via AP)

DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — Syria has condemned President Donald Trump abrupt declaration that Washington will recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the disputed Golan Heights, calling the statement “irresponsible.”

A Foreign Ministry statement on Friday said that Trump’s comments confirm “the blind bias of the United States to the Zionist entity,” referring to Israel.

It added that Trump’s statement won’t change “the fact that the Golan was and will remain Arab and Syrian.”

Trump’s announcement the day before was a major shift in American policy and gives Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu a political boost a month before elections.

The administration has been considering recognizing Israel’s sovereignty over the strategic highlands, which Israel captured from Syria in 1967, for some time and Netanyahu had pressed the matter with visiting Secretary of State Mike Pompeo this week.