Jerusalem: The Trump administration is preparing to redraw all US government maps to include the Golan Heights as part of Israel, after the president formally recognized Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights.
A State Department spokesperson told VOA's Persian service that the map changes would be "consistent" with the shift in longstanding American foreign policy that now"recognizes that the Golan Heights are part of the State of Israel.
US Special Representative for Iran Brian Hook in an interview with Voice oF America (VOA) said " the State Department would "redraw" its official maps and release them "as soon as they are ready." The map changes will reflect facts on the ground and a "need for Israel to have secure and defencible borders," Hook added.
As of Thursday, the State Department's map of Israel had not yet been updated, and still showed the Golan as Syrian territory. The map of Israel on the CIA's World Factbook website and the one published by the Library of Congress were also unchanged, with the territory marked as"Israeli occupied, The Times of Israel reported.
US President Donald Trump signed a proclamation formally recognizing Israeli sovereignty over the Golan on Monday, drawing sharp rebuke from allies and UN member states.The US news site Al-Monitor said no Democrats had agreed to support the bills, with only Republican lawmakers sponsoring the legislation in the House and Senate. There was no word on whether or when the bills would be put to a vote.
At a Wednesday Security Council session convened at Syria's request, the 14 other member nations denounced the US move, with most speakers noting a UN resolution that called Israel's de-facto annexation "null and void and without international legal effect."
Israel captured the strategic plateau from Syria in the 1967 Six Day War and in 1981 effectively annexed the area, in a move never recognized by the international community, which considers the Golan Heights to be occupied Syrian territory.
A 1974 ceasefire agreement that officially ended the Yom Kippur War led to the deployment of a UN peacekeeping force known as UNDOF on the Golan Heights.(UNI)