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Slovakia to open 'cultural office' in Jerusalem

The Slovakian flag in Bratislava, Slovakia, on 9 April 2019 [VLADIMIR SIMICEK/AFP/Getty Images]
The Slovakian flag in Bratislava, Slovakia, on 9 April 2019 [VLADIMIR SIMICEK/AFP/Getty Images]

The Embassy of Slovakia has been given the go ahead by the Israeli authorities to open a "cultural office" in Jerusalem. The news was conveyed to Slovakian Ambassador Igor Maukš by Israel's Deputy Foreign Minister Idan Roll, the Jerusalem Post has reported.

"This is an important step in Israel-Slovakia relations and another important step in the international recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel," explained Roll. "The Slovakian mission will promote cultural, technological and economic cooperation for the good of both nations."

The Palestinian Authority's Ministry of Foreign Affairs denounced Slovakia's move, saying it is a violation of international law, relevant United Nations resolutions and the position of the European Union regarding the opening of official diplomatic offices in Jerusalem. The city is regarded as occupied territory, as Israel's annexation after the 1967 Six Day War remains illegal under international law.

Indeed, the 1947 UN Partition Plan for Palestine, from which the state of Israel largely claims its legitimacy, determined that Jerusalem should be a separate entity governed internationally. This has been largely ignored by Israel and the UN ever since.

Earlier this year, the Czech Republic opened its Embassy in Jerusalem, joining the United States and Guatemala as the only countries with embassies in a city the status of which is central to the Israel-Palestine conflict. The move by the Czech government was condemned by the Palestinians and the Arab League.

READ: UK Labour Party apologises for 'conference ban' on pro-Palestine group

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Europe & RussiaIsraelMiddle EastNewsPalestineSlovakia
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