Sunak ditches Truss plan to move British embassy to Jerusalem

The former PM had ordered a review into whether the UK embassy in Israel should relocate from Tel Aviv.

Gavin Cordon
Thursday 03 November 2022 13:02 GMT
The British embassy in Tel Aviv, Israel (Andrew Parsons/PA)
The British embassy in Tel Aviv, Israel (Andrew Parsons/PA) (PA Archive)

Rishi Sunak has abandoned controversial plans by his predecessor to move Britain’s embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, Downing Street disclosed.

Liz Truss, when she was prime minister, ordered a review into whether the UK should follow the Trump administration in relocating the embassy from Tel Aviv.

Asked whether the Government was still considering a move, a No 10 spokeswoman said: “It has been looked at. There are no plans to move the British embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv.”

The plan was highly contentious as both Israel and the Palestinians claim the holy city of Jerusalem as their capital.

Former president Donald Trump’s decision to move the US embassy in 2018 sparked violent protests in Gaza amid widespread international concern that it was jeopardising hopes of a Middle East peace settlement.

Ms Truss originally made the promise of a review in a letter to the Conservative Friends of Israel during last summer’s Tory leadership contest.

As prime minister she subsequently discussed it with her Israeli counterpart Yair Lapid when they met in the margins of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.

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