UK weighing relocating embassy to Jerusalem, Truss tells Lapid

A senior Israeli official said that Lapid had been hopeful that Truss would indeed move forward on the matter.

 The Union Jack, the national flag of the United Kingdom, hangs at half-mast at the entrance to the British embassy in Tel Aviv on September 9, 2022 (photo credit: AVSHALOM SASSONI/FLASH90)
The Union Jack, the national flag of the United Kingdom, hangs at half-mast at the entrance to the British embassy in Tel Aviv on September 9, 2022
(photo credit: AVSHALOM SASSONI/FLASH90)

NEW YORK – The United Kingdom is considering relocating its embassy to Jerusalem, British Prime Minister Liz Truss told Prime Minister Yair Lapid on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York on Wednesday.

Truss informed Lapid “about her review of the current location of the British Embassy in Israel,” her office at Downing Street said after the meeting.

Lapid responded in a tweet, “I want [to] thank my good friend, British Prime Minister Liz Truss, who announced that she is positively considering moving the British Embassy to Jerusalem, the capital of Israel.”

Truss, who became prime minister this month, told the Conservative Friends of Israel in August that she would consider such a move if she entered Downing Street.

The embassy relocation would mark a sea change in British foreign policy. The international community has been loath to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital until such time as there is a two-state resolution to the conflict. Most foreign embassies in Israel are located in Tel Aviv.

What would moving the embassy entail?

Former US president Donald Trump moved to strengthen Israel’s connection to its capital city when he relocated the US Embassy. Only Guatemala, Honduras and Kosovo have followed suit.

 Prime Minister Yair Lapid with British coutnerpart Liz Truss in New York on September 21, 2022 (credit: Avi Ohayon/GPO) Prime Minister Yair Lapid with British coutnerpart Liz Truss in New York on September 21, 2022 (credit: Avi Ohayon/GPO)

The British relocation of its embassy would be particularly significant because Great Britain is considered a world power and is a permanent member of the Security Council.