Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernández touted his country’s close ties with Israel Sunday, speaking at the Israeli American Council National Summit in Florida.
Hernández, who last year ordered the relocation of the Honduran embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, recalled his first trip to Israel in 1991, when he was invited to the Jewish state by the Israeli Foreign Ministry, as part of its MASHAV leadership program.
"I feel honored to be part of this, because it is a family that I joined when I was 22 years old in Israel,” Hernández said, referencing the 1991 MASHAV trip.
"The common cause [with Israel] was felt by everyone when Israel when Israel was under attack," Hernández continued, recalling Iraqi Scud missile attacks on Israel during the Gulf War at the time of his visit.
That sense of common cause, the Honduran president added, has only strengthened as the attacks on Israel have intensified.
"Israel has been hit over the last two years by 2,600 rockets and mortars. Let me repeat what President Trump said last night. Israel has an absolute right to self-defense."
“Honduras stood with Israel, because it is the right thing to do,” said Hernández, referring to last year’s decision to move his country’s embassy to Jerusalem.
“Honduras was next in the rotation for the presidency of the UN General Assembly. But because we were on of the few countries that voted in favored of the recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, anti-Israel countries pushed a rival country, Ecuador, and Honduras was defeated.”
Hernández warned that Iran, Qatar, and Venezuela had launched concerted efforts to influence public opinion across Latin America, with blatantly anti-Israel propaganda networks targeting South and Central America.
“The forces that are hostile to Israel are constantly waging a propaganda battle in Latin America. Iran broadcasts in Spanish in the entire hemisphere with its own network.”
The president called for an alliance between the US, Israel, and countries like Honduras.
“We must form a strong trilateral alliance” to bring together the US, Israel, and friendly countries in Latin America.
“Honduras is now one of the three countries with an official diplomatic mission in the eternal capital of Jerusalem. And I want that number to grow.”
Turning to Iran’s nuclear program and aggressive moves across the Middle East, Hernández said the issue was not only a matter of Israel’s survival, but of ‘humanity’s’ survival.
“We must say ‘Never Again’, ‘Never Again’”.
“Dr. Miriam Adelson said it clearly: the issue is Jewish survival. And if Israel doesn’t survive, humanity doesn’t survive.”
“God bless Israel, God bless Honduras!”