Paraguay's President Horacio Cartes, pictured in 2016 with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu - AFP/File Photo
CAIRO – 20 May 2018: Paraguay will move its embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem on Monday, the Israeli Foreign Ministry said on Saturday. Paraguay will be the third country to relocate its embassy to Jerusalem after the United States and Guatemala.
“Paraguay President Horacio Cartes lands in Israel tomorrow [Sunday] evening, for the opening of the Paraguay Embassy in Jerusalem on Monday,” Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Emmanuel Nahshon tweeted on Saturday.
Nahshon described the relocation of Paraguay’s Embassy to Jerusalem as a “historical moment” for both countries.
By this action from the Paraguay side, Jerusalem will embrace three embassies; two Latin American embassies and the United States Embassy.
On May 14, the U.S. moved its embassy to Jerusalem, officially recognizing it as the capital city of Israel. President Donald Trump announced on Dec. 6 that the relocation of the U.S. Embassy was inevitable.
Senior White House Adviser Ivanka Trump and U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin stand next to the dedication plaque at the U.S. embassy in Jerusalem, during the dedication ceremony of the new U.S. embassy in Jerusalem, May 14, 2018. REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun
Only two days after the opening of the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem, Guatemala moved its embassy to Jerusalem too. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in April that “at least half a dozen” countries were now “seriously discussing” following the U.S. lead, but he did not identify them.
In December, 128 countries voted in a non-binding U.N. General Assembly resolution, calling on the United States to drop its recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. Nine voted against, 35 abstained and 21 did not cast a vote.
“Guatemala and Honduras, in particular, are completely in Washington’s orbit. They are dependent on their economic aid and have all of their attention in terms of drug trafficking,” Christophe Ventura, a Latin America specialist at Paris’s Institute of International and Strategic Relations (IRIS), told FRANCE 2.
Ventura added that Guatemala is particularly sensitive to American threats with regard to migration: with nearly a million Guatemalan nationals on U.S. soil, Guatemala would be unable to reabsorb their return in great numbers.
Image 2: Hilda Patricia Marroquin, the wife of Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales, cuts the ribbon during the dedication ceremony of the embassy of Guatemala in Jerusalem, as she stands with Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife Sara, and Guatemalan Foreign Minister Sandra Jovel Polanco, May 16, 2018. REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun/Pool
Evangelical Christians believe that rebuilding a Jewish temple on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem would ultimately lead to the return of Jesus Christ.
According to a 2015 Pew Research Center study, one quarter of all Americans share evangelical convictions, as do U.S. Vice-President Mike Pence.
Eighty-one percent of evangelicals cast a vote for Trump in the 2016 election. Evangelical Christians have been lobbying for decades for the U.S. to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and move its embassy there, France 24 reported.