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Liberia, Suriname pledge to open offices in Jerusalem

The announcements come as Israel seeks to reinforce and expand its relationships in Africa.
Liberian President George Weah delivers a speech during his visit to the Mashav center, an Israeli agency for international development cooperation, in the Israeli kibbutz of Gash Shfayim, north of Tel Aviv, Israel, Feb. 26, 2019.

Liberian senior officials said June 8 the country intends to open a trade office in Jerusalem that will eventually become an embassy. Israeli press was citing members of a visiting Liberian delegation headed by Minister of State for Presidential Affairs Nathaniel McGill. Accompanying the minister of state to the meeting with Israeli President Yitzhak Herzog were Minister of Commerce and Industry Mawine Diggs, Minister of Agriculture Jeanine Cooper and Minister of Information, Culture Affairs and Tourism Ledgerhood Rennie.

Liberia had severed diplomatic ties with Israel following the 1973 Yom Kippur War, but then restored them in 1983. Over the years, relations deepened even further, with the signing of bilateral cooperation agreements on aviation, economy and technology. The two countries also cooperate on security. Liberian President George Weah visited Israel in 2019 and met with then-Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The two leaders had met two years earlier, before Weah was elected president, during a one-day visit of Netanyahu to Liberia for a summit of the Economic Community of West African States.

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