Israel to name new town on Golan after Trump: Netanyahu

Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends a news conference after he was entrusted with forming the next government, at the President’s residence in Jerusalem, on April 17, 2019. Photo: Reuters/ Ronen Zvulun

Israel said on Tuesday it would name a new community on the Golan Heights after US President Donald Trump as an expression of gratitude for his recognition of its claim of sovereignty over the strategic plateau.

Israel captured the Golan from Syria in a 1967 war and annexed it, in a move not recognised internationally. The United States broke with other world powers last month when Trump signed a decree recognising Israeli sovereignty there.

“All Israelis were deeply moved when President Trump made his historic decision,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a video statement made on the Golan.

He added that, after the Jewish Passover festival, he would “bring to the government a resolution calling for a new community on the Golan Heights named after President Donald J Trump.”

Trump’s Golan move followed his decision in December 2017 to recognise Jerusalem as the Israeli capital, breaking with decades of US policy over the status of a city contested by the Palestinians.

Israel has said separately that, in appreciation of the US president, it intends to name a proposed train station near Jerusalem’s Western Wall after him.