Thursday, 16 August, 2018

Guatemala opens embassy in Jerusalem, two days after U.S. move

Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales
Deanna Wagner | 17 May, 2018, 03:31

Guatemalan president Jimmy Morales dedicated the embassy just two days after a high-powered American delegation also marked the transfer of its embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as the Israeli capital in december, saying the move was made to pursue peace in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Trump ignored widespread anger and condemnation and pushed ahead with embassy relocation plans.

The move sparked deadly protests along the Gaza border, which sits northwest of Israel, from Palestinians, who, like the Israelis, also refer to Jerusalem as their capital. Before 1980, Guatemala and a dozen countries maintained an embassy in Jerusalem. Israel has controlled West Jerusalem, where their parliament and the prime minister's home are, since 1949, and in 1967 captured East Jerusalem.

Gaza hospitals treat young Palestinians shot in violent protests
CNN journalists on the ground said it appeared that almost every neighborhood in Gaza had lost someone in Monday's demonstrations. A proposed UN Security Council press statement, put forward by Kuwait, was blocked by the USA , according to a UN diplomat.

Israeli media reports say that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will hold an official meeting with Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales and foreign minister Sandra Jovel at his office later on Wednesday afternoon and will host dinner in the honour of Guatemalan president and his wife.

Netanyahu hailed the opening of Guatemala's embassy in Jerusalem as "the beginning of something extraordinary" in the relationship between the two countries. It was the bloodiest day in the Hamas-run enclave since a 2014 war with Israel.

Reacting to the killings of Palestinians by Israeli forces Turkey has recalled its ambassadors from Israel and the US for consultations.

Congressman Lee Zeldin (R, NY-1) released the following statement after attending the opening of the United States Embassy in Israel, which now has officially been moved from Tel Aviv to the capital city of Jerusalem.