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President of Paraguay to move embassy to Jerusalem

The central South American nation joins the United States, Honduras and Guatemala in committing to the move.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu meets with Paraguay President Horacio Cartes, at the Prime Minister's office in Jerusalem on July 19, 2016. Photo by Kobi Gideon/GPO
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu meets with Paraguay President Horacio Cartes, at the Prime Minister's office in Jerusalem on July 19, 2016. Photo by Kobi Gideon/GPO

Paraguayan President Horacio Cartes told attendees at a special event marking Israel’s 70th anniversary that his country would relocate its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

Cartes said he hoped to perform the relocation before the end of his term in mid-August.

In March, Cartes’s government said the country would relocate the embassy if Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu came to visit. Last September, Netanyahu became Israel’s first acting prime minister to visit Latin America, though he did not stop in Paraguay.

Paraguay joins the United States, Honduras and Guatemala in committing to the move. The Czech Republic has also expressed interest; however, its government has not issued a unified statement.

In December, U.S. President Donald Trump officially recognized Jerusalem as the capital of the State of Israel and promised to move the American embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

While Trump has stated that he would not be attending the grand opening in May, he surprised reporters on Friday by saying, “I may go. I am very proud of it. Jerusalem has been a subject that has been promised for many, many years by presidents. They all made campaign promises but they never had the courage to carry it out. I carried it out.”

Guatemala has promised—and is expected—to move its embassy to Jerusalem just a day or two after the United States.

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