Photo: Tsafrir Abayov
MK Yisrael Katz (archive photo)
Photo: Tsafrir Abayov
Photo: Yoav Galai
'End of Syria’s contacts with Israel’s enemies.' Beilin
Photo: Yoav Galai

‘Israel will never return Golan Heights’

Right-wing MKs slam EU’s support of Syria’s claim to regain disputed territory; ‘Solana should focus on pressuring Assad to stop supporting Palestinian terror and flow of Iranian arms to Hizbullah,’ Likud’s Yisrael Katz says. Yossi Beilin: Israel will have to return Golan Heights

“Israel will never retreat from the Golan Heights; the region is an integral part of Israel and vital for its security and protection,” Likud Knesset Member Yisrael Katz said Wednesday evening in response to the European Union’s support of Syria’s claim to regain the disputed territory.


Earlier on Wednesday EU Foreign Policy chief Javier Solana told a joint news conference with Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moualem in Damascus that, “We would like to work as much as possible to see your country Syria recuperate the territory taken in 1967."


Katz said Solana should focus on “pressuring the Syrian president (Bashar Assad) to stop supporting Palestinian terror and the flow of Iranian arms to Hizbullah as part of the regional axis of evil.”


'Most Israelis would support such a deal'

Fellow Likud Knesset member and former Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom said Solana’s comments are indicative of a “complete diplomatic collapse.”


“After Europe decided to talk to Hamas, today it announces that it supports the return of the Golan (to Syria),” he said. “This is a disturbing development. The relations with Europe are very important to Israel, and everything must be done to get them back on the right track.”


However, Knesset members from the other side of the political spectrum welcomed Solana’s statements.


“Negotiations (on the Golan) must lead to security arrangements and the end of Syria’s contacts with Israel’s enemies,” Meretz chairman Yossi Beilin said. “Israel will have to return the Golan Heights region, which was under Syrian sovereignty until 1967.”


Knesset Member Avshalom Vilan, also of Meretz, said Israel would pull out of the Golan Heights in return for a comprehensive peace agreement that would include the dismantling of Hamas and Hizbullah, the demilitarization of the region and the opening of embassies and borders.


“I believe most of the Israeli public would support such a settlement,” he said. 


פרסום ראשון: 03.14.07, 20:14
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