Liz Truss pledges to review moving UK embassy to Jerusalem if elected PM

Her promise comes in a letter issued today to members of Conservative Friends of Israel


CARDIFF, WALES - AUGUST 03: UK Foreign Secretary Liz Truss speaks during a Conservative party membership hustings at the All Nations Centre on August 3, 2022 in Cardiff, Wales. Rishi Sunak and Liz Truss are holding hustings around the UK for Conservative party members as they vie to become their leader and the next UK Prime Minister. (Photo by Matthew Horwood/Getty Images)

Foreign Secretary and Tory leadership contender Liz Truss has pledged to review moving the British embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem if she is elected Tory leader and becomes prime Minister next month.

Her promise comes in a letter issued today to members of Conservative Friends of Israel. She is due to take part in a hustings with the organisation next week.

Ms Truss also warned that if Iran continues to refuse a new deal to restrict its drive to acquire nuclear weapons so that current diplomatic efforts to pursue a new agreement collapse then “all options are on the table” – suggesting she would be prepared to support military action by Israel or the United States to prevent it from getting the Bomb.

She added: “My history of advocating for Israel on the world stage is clear. As Foreign Secretary it was a great honour to renew the UK's commitment to Israel through a new UK-Israel Strategic Partnership alongside my counterpart Yair Lapid. The safety and security of Israel is of the utmost importance.”

Ms Truss said she planned to “renew her commitment” to the UK’s Jewish community. She pledged: “I will ensure that we deliver on our proposed Bill to end local councils bringing in Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) policies that target Israel.

"Public bodies should not be engaging in such discriminatory policies which go against the stance of this Government and sow needless divison. I will ensure that this is put to a stop.

“It also remains important to me that the public is educated on the dangers of antisemitism and the role it plays in driving anti-Zionism and anti-Israel sentiment.

"A crucial part of this is the continued education on the horrors of the Holocaust, which I hope will be reflected in a fitting memorial to the memories of millions of victims.”

She said she supported Mr Lapid’s recent protest to the United Nations against the current Special Committee investigating Israel, calling it “institutionally biased and a waste of money.” In her view, “UN representatives with a history of antisemitic remarks should have no role in reviewing the activities of Israel.”

Regarding the embassy, Ms Truss said she understood the “importance and sensitivity” over where it was located and had discussed the issue several times with her “good friend” Mr Lapid. While stopping short of committing to a move, her announcement of a review is the furthest any leading politician already holding high office has gone on the matter.

President Trump’s decision to move the US embassy to Jerusalem was seen as highly controversial and sparked fierce protests.

Ms Truss concluded by saying that “our shared values are strong and need defending. The UK should stand side by side with Israel, now and well into the future. As Prime Minister, I would be at the forefront of this mission. Shabbat Shalom and thank you.”

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