Azerbaijan to Open Embassy in Israel

By Hamodia Staff

A view of Baku, the capital and largest city of Azerbaijan. Francisco Anzola

YERUSHALAYIM — The parliament of Azerbaijan has approved the opening of an embassy in Israel, which would make it the first Shi’ite Muslim country to do so.

The embassy will be located in Tel Aviv, adding to its trade and tourism offices already in the city since the 1990s, The Jerusalem Post reported.

Prime Minister Yair Lapid welcomed the decision, saying “Azerbaijan is an important partner of Israel and home to one of the largest Jewish communities in the Muslim world.

“The decision to open an embassy reflects the depth of the relationship between our countries. This move is the result of the Israeli government’s efforts to build strong diplomatic bridges with the Muslim world,” he said.

“The Azeri people… will now be represented for the first time in the State of Israel,” he added.

Israel has had an embassy in Baku, the capital of Azerbaijan, since 1992.

The move comes amid tensions with Iran, which has recently expanded its consular activities and diplomatic ties in Armenia, with which Azerbaijan fought a war in 2020.

Until now, Baku has held back from opening an embassy, possibly due to concerns about alienating other Muslim states and provoking Iran. Azerbajan’s decision comes on the heels of Israel’s warming relations with Turkey, and the 2020 Abraham Accords, in which moderate Muslim countries began having diplomatic ties with Israel.

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