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Will Venezuela open embassy in Jerusalem?

Venezuela’s Acting President Juan Guaidó wants to set up an embassy in Jerusalem, the Jerusalem Post reported.

In an interview with Rabbi Pynchas Brener, the newspaper said that a pro-Israel caucus in the Venezuelan national assembly aims to reestablish ties between Venezuela and Israel and for an embassy to be opened in Jerusalem.

“Our desire is to establish the embassy in Jerusalem, just like the US – why not? We are gunning for that,” Brener said.

Venezuela broke off ties with Israel in 2009. Currently both Guaidó and Nicolas Maduro claim the presidency, with more than 50 countries (including Israel) recognizing Guaidó while 20 recognize Maduro, who became president in 2013.

Venezuela plans to launch a website next week that is meant to serve as a virtual embassy to Israel.

Restored ties with Israel are important to Venezuela, said Brener, former chief rabbi of the country, because of the “common danger” of Iran to both countries.

“For Israel, right now, the greatest menace is Iran… they are the ones threatening to erase Israel off the map,” Brener saod. “Iran has a major presence in Venezuela, supplying us with gasoline.”

Though Brenner is not yet recognized as ambassador by Israel, he will inaugurate the embassy website next week calling it a “virtual” embassy.

“We realize the pandemic is issue number one all over the world and we cannot attend to other matters; however, we are trying to gain a presence in Israel and bring attention to Venezuela,” he said.

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