Guatemala President Vows Embassy Will Remain in Jerusalem

Conservative Alejandro Giammattei is favored to win the election over former first lady Sandra Torres
AFP/ORLANDO ESTRADA

TEL AVIV – Guatemala will not move its embassy from Jerusalem, the country’s new President Alejandro Giammatei pledged on his inauguration day Tuesday.

The Central American country was the first to follow the U.S.’ lead by moving its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in May 2018.

It was not clear whether Giammatei would seek to reverse his predecessor, Jimmy Morales’, decision and move it back to Tel Aviv.

Speaking to Israel’s Science and Technology Minister Ofir Akunis at the inauguration, Giammatei also vowed to declare Iranian-proxy Hezbollah a terrorist organization.

Akunis thanked Giammatei for his “courageous decision.”

“You are expressing the deep, years-long friendship between our two countries,” he said. “Jerusalem is the heart of the Jewish people for 3,000 years,” he added.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tried to prevent Akunis’ trip to Guatemala amid a curfew of ministerial flights in case a vote would take place over his immunity request, Yediot Aharonot reported.

However, Akunis countered that the trip was of vital importance. A compromise was reached and the minister reportedly promised to cut the trip short.

Then president-elect Giammattei visited Jerusalem as part of a delegation of pro-Israel Christian lawmakers from 25 countries.

The parliamentarians signed a document pledging to “never stay silent” in the face of anti-Israel boycotts.

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