As faith-based diplomacy continues to thrive, the island nation of Fiji in the South Pacific will open an embassy in Jerusalem the following year, the country’s deputy prime minister announced on Monday.
Following the first chartered trip from the Oceania archipelago to the Holy Land last week, the remarks come as hundreds of pilgrims from Fiji are in Israel for the annual Feast of Tabernacles celebrations organized by the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem. Deputy Prime Minister Viliame Gavoka told JNS over the phone that the leadership “has the commitment.”
We are eager for that to occur as quickly as possible.
In a meeting with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu off-site from the United Nations, Sitiveni Rabuka, the Prime Minister of Fiji, reaffirmed the plan to open an embassy, he said. In New York last month, there was a general assembly debate.
Gavoka said of the country of just under a million people, “Our desire to have an embassy in Jerusalem is quite strong. “We as a people feel very close to the offspring of Abraham and long to be connected to all of Israel.” According to him, Jerusalem will be closer to the Pacific with the opening of the embassy, which is anticipated in early 2024.
Gavoka stated, “We are at the ends of the earth, and you are in the middle of the earth.”
On the first chartered aircraft between Israel and Fiji last week, more than 250 Christian pilgrims from Fiji arrived in Israel to participate in the Feast of Tabernacles events planned by the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem, an evangelical group that supports Israel. Pilgrims from Samoa, Tonga, and the Cook Islands were also transported on the 24-hour journey, which also included a layover in Hong Kong.
According to Jürgen Bühler, president of the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem, “the ICEJ branch in Fiji is having an amazing impact on their country’s relations with Israel, both by organizing their national airline’s first flight to Tel Aviv and by pushing for the opening of an embassy of Fiji in Jerusalem.”
According to Bühler, pro-Israel Christians around the world are serving as an example of what can be achieved through prayer and steadfast efforts to support the Jewish people and state.
Gavoka stated during the interview that “this is just the beginning,” adding that a few charter flights will travel to Israel each year.
Gavoka, who is also the acting prime minister, claimed that his nation was closely following the joyful activities taking place in the Holy Land online. He declared, “The entire nation of Fiji wants to be in Jerusalem.”
There are currently embassies for the US, Guatemala, Honduras, Kosovo, and Papua New Guinea in the capital of Israel. The Democratic Republic of the Congo, Sierra Leone, and Paraguay have also declared their willingness to establish embassies in Jerusalem.
All other nations with connections to Israel continue to have embassies in Tel Aviv or its environs.
The decision by then-President Donald Trump to relocate the American embassy to Jerusalem in 2018 paved the way for other governments to do the same in the years that followed, and more countries are anticipated to announce similar moves in the near future.