Pompeo to visit Western Wall with Netanyahu in break with diplomatic practice

Pompeo to visit Western Wall with Netanyahu in break with diplomatic practice

Foreign Minister Israel Katz said the move would strengthen Israel's security.

Accusing Iranian leaders of seeking the "annihilation and destruction" of Israel, he pledged continued American support. Netanyahu is facing a tough election next month. I don't know if he's doing great right now, but I hear he's doing okay.

However, Leon Panetta a veteran Democrat who served as Central Intelligence Agency director and defense secretary, among other roles, blasted Trump for "tweeting out another policy that obviously has not been worked out with our worldwide partners".

Mr Netanyahu has been pressing for this shift in USA policy.

Pompeo, who has been on a regional tour to promote the Trump administration's hard tack against Iran, received a warning from Israel, which worries it may again be in the sights of Hezbollah fighters winding down their intervention in Syria's civil war. His decision will be seen as a diplomatic coup for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. "With such threats a daily reality of Israeli life, we maintain our unparalleled commitment to Israel's security and firmly support your right to defend yourself", he said.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu thanked US President Donald Trump after he said it was time to recognise Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights. "Thank you, Mr. President", he said. "@realDonaldTrump", Netanyahu wrote in a tweet.

The Golan Heights has officially been recognised as part of Syria since the country acquired independence in 1944.

Syrian President Bashar Assad as members of the Druze community attend a rally in the Druze village of Majdal Shams in the Golan Heights commemorating the 45th anniversary of the 1973 Arab-Israeli war, on October 6, 2018.

Trump's announcement coincided with a visit by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to Jerusalem, where he became the first high-ranking American official to visit the Western Wall alongside an Israeli prime minister - another boost for Netanyahu.

In Israel the move won widespread praise, but coming just weeks before Israel's elections, much of the reaction was framed by the campaign.

"Every single person was supportive of the idea", said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

The step prompted the Palestinians to sever ties with the White House.

But that annexation has not been recognized by the global community, which has regarded the Golan Heights as occupied territory and Israeli settlements there as illegal under worldwide law.

WATCH: Netanyahu discusses Israeli sovereignty in Golan Heights with U.S.

Netanyahu has repeatedly pressed for the U.S.to recognize Israeli governance in that region.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks during a news conference in Kuwait, Wednesday, March 20, 2019.

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