The new US Embassy in Israel opens its doors in Jerusalem on Monday, which is tantamount to recognizing this city as the capital of the Jewish state.
It was a campaign promise of US President Donald Trump. An inauguration under high voltage. Many countries declined the invitation. A total of 32 delegations will be in Jerusalem, including 12 African delegations.
The transfer of the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem continues to divide, including the African continent. Only a dozen African countries responded positively to the American invitation.
Unsurprisingly, these are countries considered as Washington allies such as Rwanda, Uganda or South Sudan. Countries that last December, however, abstained in the United Nations vote condemning the recognition by Washington of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
At that time, of the 193 UN member countries, only nine countries had supported Washington and 35 had abstained. US President Donald Trump had threatened to cut funds to countries trying to vote against the US decision.
“We take note of these votes,” he said, denouncing “all those countries that take our money and then vote against us on the Security Council.”
For example, South Sudan, which received more than $700 million in development aid from Washington in 2016, abstained in the vote at the United Nations.
At the time, Togo was the only African country to support the US decision. Support related to relations between Togo and Israel. Togo is Israel’s second largest trading partner on the African continent.