Guatemala will move its embassy to Jerusalem in May, President of the Republic of Guatemala Jimmy Morales said Sunday in a speech at the 2018 American Israel Public Affairs Committee annual conference in Washington D.C., The Times of Israel reported.
Morales said that Guatemala will move its embassy to Jerusalem two days after the United States makes the move, coinciding with the 70th anniversary of Israel’s independence.
“This decision strongly evidences Guatemala’s continued support of Israel,” Morales said. The Guatemalan president was optimistic about other countries following in the U.S. and Guatemala’s footsteps and reassured the crowd that this was the right decision.
In his speech, Morales highlighted that in 1959, Guatemala was the first country to open an embassy in Jerusalem, although it was moved to Tel Aviv after the international community rejected Israeli claims to East Jerusalem.
Morales thanked U.S. President Donald Trump for “leading the way” on the embassy move and indicated that it was his decision that prompted Guatemala “to do what is right.”
Guatemala was one of nine countries that in December voted against a United Nations General Assembly resolution that called for the U.S. to drop the recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
It was also the second nation to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and consequently announce a relocation of its embassy after the U.S. made the announcement last December.
Guatemala and its neighbor, Honduras, are among the eight nations to support the move of the American embassy to Jerusalem. In a trip to Central America last week, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley praised both nations for their support.
[Photo: AIPAC / YouTube ]