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New Paraguay leader pledges to reopen Jerusalem embassy within a year, confirms Israel

New Paraguay leader pledges to reopen Jerusalem embassy within a year, confirms Israel

Title: Paraguay to Reopen Embassy in Jerusalem, Prompting Israel to Return the Favor

Paraguay’s New President, Santiago Peña, has announced plans to reopen the country’s embassy in Jerusalem, leading to Israel reciprocating by reopening its embassy in Asunción. The decision was made official following a meeting between President Peña and Foreign Minister Eli Cohen, who invited Peña to visit Israel to dedicate the new mission.

If President Peña follows through with his plan, Paraguay will become the fifth country to open an embassy in Jerusalem, joining the ranks of Kosovo, Honduras, Guatemala, and the United States. This move marks a significant shift in Paraguay’s foreign policy, as the country initially announced the relocation of its embassy to Jerusalem in 2018, only to reverse course and keep it in Tel Aviv due to objections from the incoming president’s successor.

In response to the change in plans, former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu closed Israel’s embassy in Asunción as a form of retaliation for the decision to keep the embassy in Tel Aviv. However, with President Peña’s election earlier this year, the prospect of restoring diplomatic ties between the two nations has become a reality.

The disputed status of Jerusalem has been the center of a long-standing conflict between Israel and Palestine. While Israel considers Jerusalem as its capital, the international community does not recognize this claim. Former US President Donald Trump stirred controversy in 2018 when he relocated the US embassy to Jerusalem. However, only a few other countries have followed suit.

President Peña has been seen as the political heir of his predecessor, who initially spearheaded the decision to move the embassy. In his inauguration speech, Peña extolled the accomplishments of his predecessor, a statement that might have been unwelcome by the United States, which had accused the former president of corruption.

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Furthermore, President Peña highlighted the significance of Paraguay’s alliance with Taiwan, making it the only South American country with diplomatic relations with Taiwan. This stance on international affairs indicates that the new administration intends to pursue an independent and diversified foreign policy.

As President Peña embarks on his new term, his plans to reopen Paraguay’s embassy in Jerusalem are sure to draw attention and speculation about its potential implications for the Middle East and Paraguay’s relations with other nations. The international community will be watching closely to see how the situation unfolds in the coming months.

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