Guatemala Becomes Second Country To Move Israeli Embassy To Jerusalem

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Guatemala Becomes Second Country To Move Israeli Embassy To Jerusalem

Guatemala festively opened its new embassy in Jerusalem on Wednesday, becoming the second country to do so after the United States, and giving Israel a diplomatic boost as it faces worldwide criticism for the deadly violence on the Gaza border. "You were the second country to recognize Israel", Netanyahu said referring to the country's establishment in 1948.

"It's not a coincidence that Guatemala is opening its embassy in Jerusalem right among the first, you are always among the first", said Netanyahu.

Morales called it a "transcendental moment for future generations" who will "remember that friendly countries took courageous decisions in favour of Israel and we do this because you have a special place in our hearts".

Guatemala was one of only a few nations that backed Trump's decision in December to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital and is only the second country to move its embassy to the holy city.

Guatemala opened its new embassy in Jerusalem on Wednesday.

Israel captured east Jerusalem in the 1967 Mideast war, but it is not recognised by worldwide community.

Since the 1967 war when Israel occupied East Jerusalem, the global community, as documented in a multitude of United Nations resolutions, supported the establishment of a Palestinian state on the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip with East Jerusalem as the capital. The Palestinians in the weekly protests in Gaza demands the right of return to Israel and the lifting of a decade-old naval blockade.

Netanyahu declared that the move was in line with Guatemala's close friendship with Israel. The Israeli forces killed almost 60 Palestinians in the clashes along the border this Monday.

On Monday, tens of thousands had gathered near the border while smaller numbers of stone-throwing Palestinians approached the fence and sought to break through, with Israeli snipers positioned on the other side.

It said explosive devices and firebombs were used, while Israeli soldiers were also shot at. Palestinian officials say the vast majority of the casualties have been unarmed protesters. It was the bloodiest day in the Hamas Islamist-run enclave since a 2014 war with Israel. It also triggered a diplomatic backlash against Israel.

The Security Council met in an emergency session on Tuesday to discuss developments in the Gaza Strip. In Geneva, the United Nations human rights office said Israel has repeatedly violated global norms by using deadly live fire to repel protesters.

The event was intentionally captured by Turkish media.

Netanyahu profusely praised Guatemala for making the move and noted it came only two days after the United States opened its embassy in Jerusalem.

At the same time, Israel has found other nations following the US lead and rallying to its defense.

And Al Jazeera reports Paraguay plans to move its embassy to Jerusalem by the end of May. Netanyahu and Morales were scheduled to also sit down to an official dinner at the Prime Minister's Residence together with their wives. The United States opened its Jerusalem embassy in the southern Jerusalem's Arnona neighborhood on Monday.

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