Israel welcomes Boris Johnson as foreign secretary

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Israel welcomes Boris Johnson as foreign secretary

Colourful former London mayor caused controversy on Israel visit in November

Patrick Maguire is a reporter at the Jewish News.

Boris Johnson
Boris Johnson

Israeli ambassador Mark Regev has welcomed the news that Boris Johnson has been appointed Foreign Secretary in Theresa May’s new-look cabinet.

The former London Mayor and leading Brexit campaigner replaces Phillip Hammond, the incoming chancellor, in the prestigious ministerial post.

Regev told Jewish News: “Israel welcomes the appointment of Boris Johnson as Foreign Secretary. During his time as Mayor of London, relations flourished between Israel and the British capital.

“We look forward to working with the new Foreign Secretary to further strengthen ties between the UK and Israel. This partnership makes our two democracies both more prosperous and secure”.

Last November local officials called off a visit to Palestine on safety grounds after the then-London mayor told an audience in Tel Aviv that a trade boycott of Israeli goods was “completely crazy” and supported by “corduroy, jacketed, snaggletoothed, lefty academics in the UK”.

Palestinian officials accused him of adopting a “misinformed and disrespectful” pro-Israel stance and said he risked creating protests if he visited the West Bank, although Mr Johnson claimed his comments were “very much whipped up” on social media.

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