When the World’s Newest Islamic Republic Honors the Jewish State


The Times of Israel reports: A month after Gambia declared itself an “Islamic Republic,” its longtime ruler this week warmly hosted the ambassador of the world’s only Jewish state.

Israel’s Ambassador Paul Hirschson on Tuesday inspected a presidential honor guard in the capital Banjul before he handed his letters of credentials to Vice President Isatou Njie Saidy. The next day, he sat down for an hour-long chat with President Yahya Jammeh (pictured), who has been leading this tiny West African nation since taking power in a 1994 coup.

Gambia made headlines in early December when Jammeh officially changed his country’s name to the “Islamic Republic of the Gambia” in what he explained was a bid to better reflect the country’s religious identity. More than 95 percent of Gambia’s 1.9 million citizens are Muslims. Unsurprisingly, Banjul sympathizes with the Palestinians, but it has maintained cordial relations with Jerusalem over the years.

Read more at the Times of Israel