Sunday, 27 May, 2018

Guatemala Opens Embassy in Jerusalem Amid Criticism From Palestinians, International Community

Guatemala Follows US Opens Embassy in Jerusalem Guatemala Follows US, Opens Embassy in Jerusalem
Melinda Barton | 16 May, 2018, 21:45

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu said it was fitting since Guatemala also followed the United States to be the second country to recognise Israel 70 years ago.

The Palestinian Authority today recalled its envoys to Romania, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Austria after their ambassadors attended a reception to mark the opening of the U.S. embassy in Jerusalem. "You were the second country to recognize Israel", Netanyahu said referring to the country's establishment in 1948.

Netanyahu said that this move goes "hand in hand" with opening two days ago of the US embassy in the capital. Guatemala has opened its new embassy in Jerusalem, becoming the second country to do so after the United States. "And we'd also like to see Israel Streets in Guatemala".

The status of Jerusalem is one of the thorniest obstacles to forging a peace deal between Israel and the Palestinians, who with broad global backing want East Jerusalem, captured by Israel in the 1967 Middle East war, as their capital.

Paraguay is expected to follow the U.S and Guatemala's lead, and plans to relocate their embassy to Jerusalem in the coming weeks.

In December, President Donald Trump announced he would move the USA embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and that he would recognize Jerusalem as the capital of the country.

The ministry "sees this participation as a grave breach of global law and United Nations resolutions which confirm that Jerusalem has been occupied since 1967 and ban countries from moving their embassies there", the statement said.

On the day the United States inaugurated its own embassy in Jerusalem, Israeli gunfire killed 60 Palestinians during the Gaza border protests.