United States delegation visits Israel to soothe concerns over Syria ceasefire deal

Share

Addressing the Jewish Federations of North America's General Assembly, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday said that "all Jews should have access to the Western Wall".

Those reports were based on a joint presidential statement issued by Russian President Vladimir Putin and US President Donald Trump which stated that the two leaders had reached a Memorandum of Principles on "the reduction, and ultimate elimination, of foreign forces and foreign fighters from the area".

"I have also informed our friends, firstly in Washington and also our friends in Moscow, that Israel will act in Syria, including in southern Syria, according to our understanding and according to our security needs", he said. This includes the expansion of a truce in the southwestern Syrian region which borders Israel and Jordan.

Mr Netanyahu's remarks echoed those on Sunday by Israel's Regional Cooperation Minister, Mr Tzachi Hanegbi, who sounded circumspect about the ceasefire deal and said Israel has "set red lines and will stand firm on this".

The Iranian presence through proxies on Israel's border is seen "as a major strategic threat and - importantly - increasingly as one that can not easily be addressed by a paltry few kilometers of buffer near the Golan" he continued.


The prime minister also said that Israel has offered humanitarian assistance to quake victims in Iran through the Red Cross.

The official said that on this point specifically, "the Russians have agreed to work with the Syrian regime to remove Iranian-backed forces a defined distance from opposition-held territory as well as the borders of the Golan in Jordan". The distance would range from as little as 5-7 kilometers (3-4 miles) to around 30 kilometers (18 miles), depending on current rebel positions in the Syrian controlled area of the Golan Heights, the official told Reuters on condition of anonymity.

In these cases, dubbed by the police "case 1,000" and "case 2,000", Netanyahu is suspected of receiving luxury gifts from Israeli-US Hollywood tycoon Arnon Milchan and allegedly making secret deals to receive favorable coverage in Yediot Aharonot, one of Israel's largest daily newspapers.

According to The Times of Israel, Israel Defense Forces chief of staff Gadi Eisenkot made a secret trip to Brussels last Thursday to meet with General Curtis Scaparrotti, head of the United States army's European command, to discuss Iranian influence in Syria.

Share