Netanyahu tells Putin ‘Golan Heights is our red line’

Published April 22nd, 2016 - 07:14 GMT
Israeli soldiers in the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights on June 28, 2015. (AFP/File)
Israeli soldiers in the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights on June 28, 2015. (AFP/File)

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reiterated Thursday that Golan Heights would remain a part of Israel.

Netanyahu's remarks came during a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the Kremlin in Moscow.

Noting that he came to Moscow to discuss Israel's "red lines" in its national security, and to strengthen coordination between the two countries in order to prevent "any mistakes, misunderstandings and unnecessary accidents" in terms of security, Netanyahu said that they were doing everything in order to prevent the opening of a new terrorist front on Golan Heights against Israel.

"This is our red line. We can't go back to the days when our villages were fired at from the Golan Heights.

"Therefore, the Golan Heights will remain part of Israeli territory whether within the framework of an agreement or not," he said.

The Israeli prime minister also said that they were doing their best to stop the flow of arms from Iran and Syria to Hezbollah in Lebanon.

Putin, for his part, recalled that he met with his Israeli counterpart Reuven Rivlin last month, and said that the frequency of official meetings between the two countries resulted from the difficult situation in the region.

Thursday's visit was the third face-to-face meeting between Netanyahu and Putin in the past seven months, according to Jerusalem Post.

The visit came three days after Putin's meeting with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

The Syrian Golan Heights -- which remains inhabited by a small Syrian Druze community of roughly 20,000 -- was occupied during the 1967 conflict and formally annexed by Israel in 1981 in a move that was never recognized internationally.

Following the war, the UN Security Council adopted Resolution 242, which calls for Israel's withdrawal from territories conquered in 1967, including the Golan Heights.

By Hakan Ceyhan Aydogan

© Copyright Andolu Ajansi

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