Papua New Guinea will open embassy in Jerusalem

Monday, February 27, 2023 | Tag Cloud Tags: , ,

by Karen Faulkner, Worthy News Correspondent

(Worthy News) – Predominantly Christian Papua New Guinea has announced plans to establish its embassy mission to Israel in Jerusalem, recognizing that the ancient Biblical city is the true capital of Israel, the Jerusalem Post reports. Israel and Papua New Guinea established diplomatic relations in 1978, but this will be the first embassy the south-east Asian island country has opened in Israel.

Opening an embassy in Jerusalem remains a highly controversial decision amid the intense, protracted, violent conflict between Israel and the Palestinians regarding who can claim Jerusalem as their capital. In establishing an embassy in Jerusalem, Papua New Guinea will follow the steps of former US President Donald Trump, who first moved the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in 2018. Trump’s decision was so controversial that so far, only Guatemala, Honduras, and Kosovo have done the same.

In a statement Sunday, Israel’s Foreign Minister Eli Cohen said Papuan Foreign Minister Justin Tkachenko had confirmed the plan to open an embassy in Jerusalem. “I thank Papua New Guinea for the close relationship, the overwhelming support at international institutions, and the decision to establish an embassy in Jerusalem,” Cohen said. “This is further evidence of the warm and important relationship between the countries,” he added.

Tkachenko reportedly said the new embassy would be inaugurated this year, JPost reports.

While very few countries currently have an embassy in Jerusalem, Australia, Brazil, Columbia, the Czech Republic, Ecuador, Georgia, Hungary, Paraguay, Serbia, Slovakia, Ukraine, and Uruguay have opened trade offices in the city in partial recognition of Israel’s claim to it, JPost noted.

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