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International

Guatemala to follow Trump by moving Israel embassy to Jerusalem

11:05, Monday, 25 December, 2017
Guatemala to follow Trump by moving Israel embassy to Jerusalem

Guatemala’s president has announced that the Central American country will move its embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, becoming the first country to follow the lead of US president Donald Trump in ordering the change.

Guatemala was one of nine countries that voted with the United States and Israel on Thursday when the UN general assembly overwhelmingly adopted a non-binding resolution denouncing Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.Trump didn’t set any timetable for moving the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, and neither did Guatemalan president Jimmy Morales.

In a post on his official Facebook account on Christmas Eve, Morales said following talks with Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, he decided to instruct the foreign ministry to move the embassy.

No other country has their embassy for Israel in Jerusalem, though the Czech Republic has said it is considering such a move.

Trump upended decades of US policy with his announcement on December that he was recognising Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, which Palestinians saw as siding with Israel on the most sensitive issue in the Israel-Palestinian conflict.

Israel claims all of Jerusalem as its capital, while the Palestinians claim the city’s eastern sector, which was captured by Israel in 1967 and is home to sensitive religious sites. Many governments have long said that the fate of Jerusalem must be resolved through negotiations.

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