A senior Russian foreign ministry official responded to a U.N. decision not to accept Russian peacekeepers in the Golan Heights, reiterating that Russian troops could replace Austrian forces when they withdraw, according to the Russian Ria Novosti news agency.
“If the U.N. really is concerned about tensions in the Golan Heights, then sending a Russian contingent is the solution,” Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov posted on his Twitter account on Saturday afternoon.
On Friday Russia offered to send its peacekeepers to the Golan Heights as part of a U.N. monitoring mission after Austria said it would withdraw its forces, citing an “unacceptable level of danger to its personnel.”
The U.N. said that while it welcomed Russia’s proposal, the peacekeeping agreements prevent the body from accepting Russian troops, as permanent Security Council members are barred from taking part in the U.N. Disengagement Observer Force.
Translated and edited by The Syrian Observer