Israel regrets pullout of Austrian peacekeepers in Golan

June 6, 2013 18:23

Israel expressed regret Thursday over Austria's decision earlier in the day to withdraw its UNDOF peacekeeping forces from the Golan Heights.

"While appreciating Austria's longtime contribution and commitment to peacekeeping in the Middle East, we nevertheless regret this decision and hope that it will not be conducive to further escalation in the region," the Foreign Ministry said in a statement. Austrians account for about 380 of the 1,000-strong UN force monitoring a ceasefire between Syria and Israel.

The ministry said Israel expected the UN "to uphold its commitment under Security Council Resolution 350 (1974), in virtue of which UNDOF has been established.

Reuters contributed to this report.

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