Created during the Cold War, the United Nations disengagement observer force (UNDOF) do not allow for the participation of permanent members of the Security Council.

The Russian offer to replace the Austrian troops in the Golan Heights cannot therefore go through without an amendment to the Israeli-Syrian Protocol of 1974. UN experts are examining whether to amend the Protocol or to seek the creation of a new mission by the Security Council. The other four permanent members are leaving it up to the parties concerned, Syria and Israel.

Syria has endorsed the Russian initiative. Telephone negotiations between President Putin and Prime Minister Netanyahu are underway.