Guatemala announces plan to move Israel embassy to Jerusalem

"We are in contact with at least ten countries, some of them in Europe" to discuss the move, deputy foreign minister Tzipi Hotovely told public radio.

No country now has its embassy in Jerusalem, instead keeping them in the Israeli commercial capital Tel Aviv.

She spoke a day after Guatemala said it would move its embassy to the city, a move slammed by Palestinian officials as "shameful".

Some of the U.S.'s closest allies condemned the decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

"God bless you, my friend, President Morales", Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a statement, referring to his Guatemalan counterpart, Jimmy Morales.

Guatemala and Israel were joined by Honduras, the Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Palau and Togo in voting with the United States and opposing the measure. Netanyahu said on Twitter, "It is just the beginning and it is important".

The move followed the historic declaration earlier in the month by U.S. President Donald Trump, formally recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and deciding to move the American embassy from Tel Aviv to the holy city.

Meanwhile, Palestinian authorities denounced the decision.

The North American country was one of the nine countries that had opposed the United Nations' resolution denouncing Donald Trump's decision to move U.S. embassy to Jerusalem.

Israel occupied East Jerusalem, in which the Al-Aqsa and the Haram al-Sharif are located, during the 1967 Arab-Israeli War.

The resolution passed by the General Assembly declared the United States action on Jerusalem "null and void".

Trump's December 6 announcement has triggered weeks of clashes between Palestinian protesters and Israeli security forces, which have left 12 Palestinians dead.

Israelis see the whole of the city as their undivided capital while the Palestinians view the east as the capital of their future state.

Kızılırmak said they had no knowledge of when and why they would be deported, as Turkey's Embassy to Tel Aviv and Consulate to Jerusalem are monitoring the issue.

  • Joey Payne