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  • Honduras' President Juan Orlando Hernandez speaks during a news conference at the Presidential House in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, August 19, 2019.

    Honduras' President Juan Orlando Hernandez speaks during a news conference at the Presidential House in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, August 19, 2019. | Photo: Reuters

Published 28 August 2019

The move follows the formal recognition by U.S. President Donald Trump of Jerusalem as the Israeli capital. Last May, Trump moved the nation's embassy to the disputed city.

Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernandez will travel to Jerusalem to inaugurate a “diplomatic office” in the city on Sept. 1, the Honduran government said in a Tuesday statement.

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The office will be an extension of the existing Honduran embassy ​​​​​​located ​in Tel Aviv, said the government.

Hernandez said in March that he would open a trade office in Jerusalem. It was not immediately clear how the new diplomatic office would be related to a trade office.

Last December, Hernandez made the announcement that his government is mulling moving the Honduran embassy to Jerusalem.

After Donald Trump’s decision to “recognize” Jerusalem as Israel’s capital back in 2018,  the U.N. General Assembly issued a resolution condemning the act. Yet Honduras was one of only eight countries that went along with Trump, following the lead of Guatemala, Israel, the Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Palau, and Togo.

Other international leaders have expressed their intention to do the same as the U.S., such as Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro.

This move goes against the large majority of the international community that considers Jerusalem to be a contested area that should be the shared capital of both Israel and Palestine, with Israel West Jerusalem and East Jerusalem as future Palestine’s capital.

The recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital has been a major policy push of the Benjamin Netanyahu administration, putting pressure on smaller, economically unstable countries by threatening to deny economic cooperation.

Israel annexed Jerusalem in 1967, which has not been accepted internationally as legal.

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