Papua New Guinea became the fifth nation to open an embassy in Jerusalem during a ceremony on Tuesday, attended by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his counterpart PNG Prime Minister James Marape.
Marape cited “our shared heritage, acknowledging the Creator God” as one of the reasons for opening his country’s embassy in Israel’s capital city of Jerusalem.
“Many nations choose not to open their embassies in Jerusalem, but we made the conscious choice,” Marape stated.
“This has been the universal capital of the nation and people of Israel. For us to call ourselves Christians, paying respect to God will not be complete without recognizing that Jerusalem is the universal capital of the people and nation of Israel.”
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, PNG Prime Minister James Marape, Foreign Minister Cohen, Jerusalem Mayor Lion and a delegation of ministers from Papua New Guinea dedicated the Embassy of Papua New Guinea in Jerusalem, the capital of Israelhttps://t.co/IOGhK31xNm pic.twitter.com/9GqBaeCXrm— Prime Minister of Israel (@IsraeliPM) September 5, 2023
Foreign Minister Eli Cohen was also in attendance, having recently returned from an official visit to Abraham Accords partner Bahrain, as was Jerusalem Mayor Moshe Lion.
Speaking to the PNG delegation, Netanyahu said, “I was very moved when I heard your anthem. I heard the words ‘prayer’ and ‘hope’" and added that the city of Jerusalem was the source of those ideals.
“Much of the origin of this prayer was in this city, and as you correctly said, it’s been our capital for the last 3,000 years," Netanyahu affirmed.
"This is where so much of our heritage emerged from. This is where our values were forged. This is where our prophets prophesied. This is where so many of the eternal values that we hold dear were created and disseminated to the people of Israel and from there to all humanity.”
The Israeli prime minister praised Papua New Guinea for being the first Asian-Pacific country to open its embassy in Jerusalem.
“So, I think it’s fitting that a state and a people so deeply committed to these values do what you just did – that is open an embassy in Jerusalem.”
The two prime ministers also conducted a private meeting, where they discussed economic cooperation between the two countries, especially in the field of agriculture.
The new PNG embassy is located near the embassies of Guatemala and Honduras.
The delegation traveling with Marape, including several pastors, visited several religious sites within the Holy City.
Papua New Guinea is mostly Christian, with some 95% of the population claiming to belong to the Christian faith.
The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.