(JNS.org) Nicaragua and Israel restored diplomatic relations Wednesday after a seven-year rupture.
Nicaragua broke off relations with Israel in 2010 in protest of the Mavi Marmara flotilla incident, in which nine Turkish pro-Palestinian activists were killed in clashes after they had attacked Israeli forces. Unlike other Central American countries, such as Costa Rica and Guatemala, that enjoy close relations with Israel, Nicaragua is closely aligned with Iran and routinely votes against Israel in international forums.
“Today, we’re blessed to have relations with over 160 countries and the number continues to grow,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a statement Tuesday.
“Next week, an additional country will announce the establishment of relations with the state of Israel,” he said, alluding to the subsequent announcement on Nicaragua. “Last year, I visited five continents, not including Latin America, [but] including the leading powers of the world: the U.S., Russia, China and of course other countries—Britain, Australia, African countries, Muslim countries [such as] Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan.”
Israel's Foreign Ministry said Wednesday that both the Israeli and Nicaraguan governments "view very favorably the re-establishment of ties with the aim of advancing joint cooperation for the advancement of both nations and to contribute to the struggle to achieve peace in the world."