Jordan: Guatemala's decision to move embassy to Jerusalem fuels violence


Guatemala becomes the second nation to formally move their Israel embassy to Jerusalem.

In anticipation of the inauguration of the Guatemalan Embassy in Jerusalem's Malcha Technology Park on May 16, the city illuminated the Old City walls with flags of Guatemala, Israel and the United States along with a message thanking President Jimmy Morales Cabrera of Guatemala.

President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as the Israeli capital in december, saying the move was made to pursue peace in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

"You have been all the time among the many first", he stated.

Paraguay's embassy is expected to relocate before the end of May.

Some 150 people crammed into the foyer of the embassy, including U.S. Ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, Sheldon Adelson, Jerusalem mayor, Nir Barkat and numerous Guatemalan ministers and members of the legislature, attended the event.

Post the opening of the embassy, violent clashes erupted between Palestinian protesters and Israeli soldiers at the Gaza Strip, resulting in the killing of 62 agitators.

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"Peace-loving countries should support the two-state solution based on the worldwide legitimacy, which calls on the establishment of an independent Palestinian state on pre-June 4, 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital", the minister stressed. In Geneva, the United Nations human rights office said Israel has repeatedly violated global norms by using deadly live fire to repel protesters.

Since the Hamas-led protests began on March 30, more than 110 Palestinians have been killed and some 2,500 have been wounded by live fire, according to the Palestinian health ministry.

The move is also seen by some as a gesture to elicit United States support at a time when Morales stands accused by Guatemalan prosecutors of accepting illegal campaign contributions.

"The Guatemalan government has chosen to stand on the wrong side of history, to side with violations of global law and human rights, and to take a hostile step against the Palestinian people and the Arab world", he wrote in a statement.

On Wednesday, a day after expelling Israel's ambassador in response to the Gaza deaths, Turkey ordered the Israeli consul general in Istanbul to return home.

"This is the land of Jesus", he told reporters outside the embassy, praising the "wonderful" decision by President Jimmy Morales to move the Guatemalan embassy back to Jerusalem.