Syria, Israel Agree to Reopen Key Crossing in Disputed Golan Heights – US Envoy

Middle East

In late September, Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman signaled his country’s readiness to resume normal activity at the Quneitra border crossing point, adding that “now the ball is in the Syrian court.”

US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said that israel and Syria had agreed to open the Quneitra checkpoint in the Golan Heights on Monday to help UN peacekeepers “prevent hostilities” in the area.

“We look to both israel and Syria to provide UN peacekeepers the access they need as well as assurances of their safety. We also call on Syria to take the necessary steps so UNDOF [the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force] can safely and effectively deploy and patrol without interference,” Haley pointed out.

Over Half of UN Peacekeepers Deployed on Syrian Side of Golan Heights – UNDOF

Her statement came a few weeks after Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman said that the Jewish state is ready to re-open the Quneitra checkpoint, the only official border crossing point with Syria.

“We see Syrian police and customs officers on the opposite side of the border, work is underway, patrols of the Russian military police are passing. […] We are ready to bring life back to normal,” Lieberman said after visiting the Israeli section of the crossing in late September.

Lt. Gen. Sergei Kuralenko, the deputy commander of the Russian forces in Syria, for his part, said that…

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