Say NO to moving the UK embassy in Israel to Jerusalem

UK Prime Minister Liz Truss stated that she was considering moving the UK embassy in Israel to Jerusalem – a move that would fly in the face of international law and the rights of the Palestinian people.

Israel has illegally occupied the Palestinian territory of East Jerusalem, the Gaza Strip and the West Bank for over half a century. Israel illegally annexed East Jerusalem in 1980 – in violation of international law – in the aim of establishing complete control of Jerusalem. The international community has committed to a UN resolution not to establish diplomatic embassies in Jerusalem, because of Israel’s ongoing illegal occupation.

Moving the UK embassy would follow in the footsteps of former US President Donald Trump in breaking with international consensus to wholly disregard international law. It would signal support for Israel’s violations of Palestinian rights and essentially greenlight Israel’s illegal occupation. 

Israel is systematically forcing Palestinians out of Jerusalem and constructing illegal settlements on occupied Palestinian land. Since the beginning of its 1967 occupation, Israel has forcibly transferred over 14,000 Palestinians out of East Jerusalem. Today, Palestinians living in the Sheikh Jarrah and Silwan neighbourhoods of East Jerusalem face imminent eviction, and home demolitions are an ever-present threat. Any move by the UK to legitimate Israeli control of Jerusalem, such as moving the UK embassy, will embolden Israel in its ethnic cleansing of Palestinians and illegal settlement enterprise.

The UK government must hold Israel to account for its violations of international law, not support and encourage Israel’s violations. Whilst UK Prime Minister Liz Truss condemned Russia’s occupation of Ukraine, she signalled support for Israel’s occupation – and disenfranchisement of the Palestinian people of their land and rights. Such principles cannot be selectively applied. The Palestinian people continue to resist Israel’s apartheid and occupation regime, and it is our legal and moral duty to stand with them. 

Tell the UK government to uphold international law and human rights: say NO to moving the UK embassy to Jerusalem.

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