Hebrew-language media reported that the Israeli military and police were preparing for violent protests on both sides of the border. According Channel 13 news, snipers have been deployed and riot control measures, such as tear gas and rubber bullets, have been supplied to forces stationed in the area.
Approximately half of the Golan’s residents are Jewish Israelis while the remainder are Druze who are mostly citizens of Syria.
White House officials are currently drafting an official US declaration recognizing Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights, with Trump set to sign it when he hosts Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Washington next week, Israeli TV reports said Friday.
“Baghouz is free and the military victory against Daesh has been achieved,” tweeted Mustafa Bali, a spokesman for the SDF, referring to the group by its Arabic acronym.
The elimination of the last IS stronghold in Baghouz marks the end of the militants’ proto-state, which at its height blanketed large parts of Syria and Iraq, but the group maintains a scattered presence and sleeper cells across Syria and Iraq. IS affiliates in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula, Afghanistan and other countries continue to pose a threat, and the group’s ideology has inspired so-called lone-wolf attacks that had little if any connection to its leadership.