After Trump Decree, UN Chief 'Clear That Golan Status Has Not Changed,' Says Spokesman

A UN Security Council resolution adopted in 1981 declared that Israel's 'decision to impose its laws, jurisdiction and administration in the occupied Syrian Golan Heights is null and void'

FILE PHOTO: United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres gives a statement after delivering a speech on disarmament and denuclearisation at the University of Geneva (UNIGE) in Geneva, Switzerland, May 24, 2018.
\ Denis Balibouse/ REUTERS

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is "clear that the status of Golan has not changed," UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said on Monday after U.S. President Donald Trump recognized the Golan Heights as Israeli territory.

"The UN's policy on Golan is reflected in the relevant resolutions of the Security Council and that policy has not changed," Dujarric said. Israel seized the strategic land from Syria in the 1967 Middle East war.

A UN Security Council resolution adopted unanimously by the 15-member body in 1981 declared that Israel's "decision to impose its laws, jurisdiction and administration in the occupied Syrian Golan Heights is null and void and without international legal effect." It also demanded Israel rescind its decision. 

Trump on Monday recognized the Golan Heights as Israeli territory in an election boost for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, as his chief political rival sought to appear as a better alternative to lead Israel.

During a White House visit by Netanyahu, Trump signed a proclamation officially granting U.S. recognition of the Golan Heights as Israeli territory, in a dramatic shift from decades of U.S. policy.

The recognition, which Trump had announced in a tweet last Thursday, appeared to be the most overt gesture by the Republican president to help Netanyahu, who had been pressing Trump for the move.

The Israeli prime minister, who faces an election on April 9, earlier on Monday cut short his U.S. visit after a rocket fired from Gaza injured seven people near Tel Aviv. He arrived in Washington on Sunday, originally for a four-day trip.