By Kirsty Needham
SYDNEY (Reuters) – Papua New Guinea will open an embassy in Jerusalem next week during a visit by Prime Minister James Marape, a spokesperson for his office said on Monday.
“Yes, that is correct,” said a spokesperson from Marape’s office, when asked whether the country is set to open the embassy and that Marape would visit Israel next week.
Israel’s foreign ministry said in February Papua New Guinea would open its first embassy in the country some time in 2023.
Israeli media including Channel 14 and the Times of Israel reported the inauguration of the embassy would take place on September 5.
The vast majority of countries with an official diplomatic presence in Israel have their embassies in Tel Aviv, with only the United States, Kosovo, Guatemala and Honduras currently basing theirs in Jerusalem.
Israel annexed the eastern part of Jerusalem after capturing it in the 1967 Middle East war and regards the city as its “eternal and indivisible” capital, but that is not recognised internationally.
Palestinians want to have the capital of an eventual Palestinian state there.
(Reporting by Kirsty Needham in Sydney; Writing by Alasdair Pal; Editing by Lincoln Feast)