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Syria decries Israeli military assaults on protesters in occupied Golan

Residents of the Golan Heights opposed to the Tel Aviv regime’s plan to install wind turbines in the occupied Syrian territory clash with Israeli forces in the area on June 21, 2023. (Photo by SANA)

Syria has strongly condemned the Israeli military over the use of excessive and brutal force against residents of the Golan Heights opposed to the Tel Aviv regime’s plan to install wind turbines in the occupied Syrian territory.

Syrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates announced in a statement on Thursday that the deployment of a large number of Israeli troops in Mas'ade village in the northern Golan Heights with the intent of terrorizing locals and barbaric attacks on them shows that terrorism constitutes the long-established practice of Israeli authorities.

The steadfastness and resilience of Syrians in the occupied Golan reaffirm that the occupying Israeli regime is inescapably doomed to collapse and that its settlement construction projects cannot help it forge an identity, the ministry added.

On Wednesday, thousands of protesters in the occupied Golan Heights were met with Israeli tear gas, sponge-tipped bullets, and a water cannon as they demonstrated against the construction of wind turbines there.

Dozens of people were injured as authorities hit back at protesters who threw stones, set off fireworks, lit tires and blocked roads.

Observers believe the wind turbine project is among the colonial plans of the Israeli regime in the occupied Golan Heights. 

Israeli authorities plan to install 46 wind turbines in an area near the villages of Majdal Shams, Ein Qiniyye, Buq’ata, and Mas’ade in Golan, according to SANA.

In 1967, Israel waged a full-scale war against Arab territories, during which it occupied a large area of the Golan and annexed it four years later – a move never recognized by the international community.

In 1973, another war broke out and a year later, the United Nations brokered a ceasefire and established a buffer zone between the Israeli and Syrian forces. The UN also adopted several resolutions calling for Israel's withdrawal from the Golan, but the regime has ignored them.

Israel has over the past several decades come up with dozens of illegal settlements in the occupied Golan in defiance of international calls for the regime to stop its illegal construction activities there

In 2019, former US President Donald Trump signed a decree recognizing Israeli "sovereignty" over the Golan Heights, in a move that was widely condemned by the international community. Syria denounced the US decision as a violation of its sovereignty and territorial integrity.

In December 2021, Israel announced its plan to double the number of its illegal settlements in the Golan Heights despite a resolution by the UN General Assembly demanding that the regime stop its settlement activities and withdraw from the occupied territory.

The Golan Heights is a region of Syria that has been militarily occupied by Israel since 1967. Damascus has repeatedly reaffirmed its sovereignty over the area, saying it must be completely restored to its control.

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