The United States no longer refers to the Golan as an "Israeli" territory in its latest annual human rights report, published Wednesday, although the State Department insists that the change in wording does not mean a change of politics  The report now defines the area "Golan Heights controlled by Israel".
When asked about changing such a sensitive topic in the Middle East, a senior US official told reporters in Washington: "There is no change in our perspectives or our policy towards these territories and the need of a solution negotiated there. "
" This, by the way, is not a human rights issue, it is a problem of legal status, "said Michael Kozak of the State Department Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor [1
Another semantic change appeared in last year's report was presented again this year, with a section entitled "Israel, Golan Heights, West Bank and Gaza", instead of the previous "Israel and Occupied Territories".
Nabil Abu Rudeineh, spokesman for the president of the Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas, said that the United States is abandoning the term "Occupation" from the occupied Palestinian territories and from the Syrian Golan Heights is "a continuation of the approach hostile to the US administration towards our Palestinian people and is against all UN resolutions ".
Stressed: "These American securities do not change the fact that the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967 and the occupied Arabian Golan are territories under the Israeli occupation in accordance with UN resolutions and international law," he said Abu Rudeinah, as sent by the Palestinian news agency Maan.
Al Jazeera & # 39; s Rosiland Jordan said the term "Occupied Territories" derives from a number of UN resolutions.
"Both human rights groups and journalists are raising questions about whether the Trump administration is trying to stay on the right side of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's government in Israel by removing this language, "he said, speaking from Washington, DC.
Challenging international consensus
President Donald Trump, who showed strong support for Israel, his close ally of his country, recognized Jerusalem as the country's capital in 2017, challenging international consensus and with great regret of Palestinian leaders, who see East-Israeli Jerusalem as the capital of their future
Israel seized much of the Golan Heights from Syria during the Six-Day War of 1967 and then effectively annexed it in 1981, a move that has never been recognized by the whole
Israel and Syria remain technically at war after the 1973 war, although a demilitarized border area established through an armistice has long been relatively calm until the beginning of the Syrian civil war in 2011.
US influential Trump ally Senator Lindsey Graham said Monday during a visit to the Golan Heights c on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that would have pushed for the recognition of the United States of Israel's sovereignty over the strategic region "now and forever".
Last month, US senators Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, Tom Cotton and Congressman Mike Gallagher introduced legislation in the House of Representatives and the Senate to recognize Israel's sovereignty over the occupied Golan.
The Republican comrades' bills have seven co-sponsors in the Senate and 23 co-sponsors in the House. All are Republicans. Both legislative texts were referred to the respective foreign affairs committees.
Al Jazeera and news agencies