Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales followed suit with his American counterpart Donald Trump on Sunday to announce the transfer to Jerusalem of his country’s embassy in Israel.
Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales followed suit with his US counterpart Donald Trump on Sunday to announce the transfer to Jerusalem of his country’s embassy in Israel, despite a vote of condemnation by the UN General Assembly .
“I gave instructions to the Minister (of Foreign Affairs, Sandra Jovel) to initiate the steps” to implement this decision, wrote the president on his Twitter account, a message broadcast by his press service.
First head of state to make a similar decision to that of Donald Trump, President Morales reported on the social networks of a telephone interview he had had before with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
“One of the most important themes (of the talks) with the (Israeli) Prime Minister was the return of the Guatemalan embassy to Jerusalem,” said Jimmy Morales, highlighting the “excellent relations” between the two countries. “since Guatemala supported the creation of the State of Israel”.
Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Emmanuel Nahshon praised the “important decision” a few hours later: “Great news, a real friendship!”, He said on his Twitter account.
On Friday, President Morales defended his country’s support for the United States’ decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, in the wake of the massive UN General Assembly vote condemning the US president’s move.
“Guatemala is historically pro-Israel” and “in 70 years of relations, Israel has been our ally,” he said.
Guatemala voted against the UN condemnation with Honduras, Togo, Micronesia, Nauru, Palau and the Marshall Islands, in addition to the United States and Israel.
“Despite the fact that we have only been nine in the world, we have total certainty and belief that this was the right way,” he said.
Of the 193 countries that make up the UN General Assembly, 128 voted for the resolution condemning the US decision, including US allies like France and Britain.
This vote “is an insult we will not forget,” US ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley told his fourteen Security Council partners. In the end, the text was not adopted, the United States having used its permanent member veto.
Christmas tarnished in Palestine
Donald Trump’s decision on December 6 sparked near-daily demonstrations in the occupied territories and tarnished Christmas for Palestinian Christians.
The position of the United Nations has changed little in decades. It does not recognize the annexation of East Jerusalem, which it regards as occupied territory, and has declared the Israeli law of 1980 as a violation of international law.
For her, the final status of Jerusalem must be negotiated between the parties.
The widespread international vision remains that of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and an independent Palestinian state.
UN Resolution 478 in 1980 called upon all countries with a diplomatic mission in Jerusalem to withdraw it. Thirteen countries (Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Netherlands, Panama, Uruguay, Venezuela) had moved their embassy to Tel Aviv, where they are located in other countries.