Home | World | Israel 'in touch with 10 countries' over embassy moves

Israel 'in touch with 10 countries' over embassy moves

Font size: Decrease font Enlarge font
Israel 'in touch with 10  countries' over embassy moves
 Israel's deputy foreign minister has said her government is "in contact with at least 10 countries" over the potential relocation of their embassies to Jerusalem.
Tzipi Hotovely's comments on Monday came a day after Guatemala announced plans to move its embassy to Jerusalem, following a similar decision by the US earlier this month which sparked widespread international condemnation and mass rallies across the Muslim world.
Speaking to state radio, Hotovely did not specify the countries in question but said "some" of them are "in Europe".
"So far we have only seen the beginning," she said, adding that US President Donald Trump's decision would "trigger a wave" of followers.
The status of Jerusalem is one of the main sticking points in efforts to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Palestinian leaders want occupied East Jerusalem as the capital of a future state, while Israel says the city cannot be divided.
Breaking with decades of policy, Trump announced on December 6 that the US recognised Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and said his administration would be moving its embassy from Tel Aviv to the Holy City.
Following Trump's announcement, a resounding majority of UN member states - 128 countries - last week voted in favour of a resolution declaring Washington's move "null and void".
Guatemala, the US, Israel and six other countries voted against the resolution at the emergency UN General Assembly meeting on Thursday. No European country voted against the resolution, but several abstained.
See how each country voted here.
In a statement on Monday, the Palestinian foreign ministry criticised Guatemala for its plans to relocate its embassy to Jerusalem.
"It's a shameful and illegal act that goes totally against the wishes of church leaders in Jerusalem" and of last week's UN General Assembly resolution, it said in a statement.