Trump to Recognize Golan Heights as Part of Israel, Pence Says

(Bloomberg) -- President Donald Trump will formally recognize Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights on Monday as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visits the White House, Vice President Mike Pence said.

“For generations, leaders have recognized that the Golan Heights are critical to the strategic security of the state of Israel,” Pence said at an annual pro-Israel policy gathering in Washington. “Today, for the first time in 52 years, with Prime Minister Netanyahu at his side, the president of the United States will formally recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights.”

Netanyahu, who’s facing a tough re-election vote April 9, praised Trump last week after the U.S. president said it was time to recognize the Golan Heights as part of Israel. The prime minister is cutting his trip to Washington short after an rocket attack on Israel from Gaza.

While the news about the Golan Heights was welcomed by most Israelis, some saw it as a cynical ploy to interfere in their election and help Netanyahu at a time when he’s facing increasing scrutiny in a sprawling corruption probe.

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