In a post on the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry website on 26 March, Spokesperson Kateryna Zelenko announced Ukraine’s official position on the matter of Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights – to be guided by the relevant UN Security Council resolutions.
“The matter of the Golan Heights has been repeatedly considered by the UN Security Council, which has made corresponding decisions, especially resolutions No. 242 of 1967, No. 465 of 1980, and No. 497 of 1981. Our state continues to consistently advocate the pursuit of a comprehensive peaceful solution in the Middle East and the consideration of Israel’s legitimate security interests,” the press release states.
UN Security Council resolution No. 497 of 1981 states that “the acquisition of territory by force is inadmissible, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations, the principles of international law and relevant Security Council resolutions”. It also states that “the Israeli decision to impose its laws, jurisdiction and administration in the occupied Syrian Golan Heights is null and void and without international legal effect”.
On 25 March, US President Donald Trump signed a declaration to recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights. The ceremony at the White House was attended by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Between 1944 and 1967, the Golan Heights were part of Syria, but two thirds of the territory was annexed by Israel during the Six Day War of 1967. In 1981, the Israeli government unilaterally declared its sovereignty over the territory, but this was not recognized by the world community or the UN Security Council, which constantly called for the territory to be returned to Syria.