Czech Republic considering moving embassy to J'lem

Spokeswoman confirms Czech Republic is considering moving its embassy from Tel Aviv to J'lem, but still taking EU position into account.

Nissan Tzur,

Milos Zeman
Milos Zeman
Reuters

Following a Channel 10 report that Israel is exerting pressure on the Czech Republic to transfer its embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, a foreign ministry spokeswoman in Prague confirmed that the Czech government is considering the possibility of such a move "in the reasonable future."

Channel 10 reported on Saturday that Israeli Ambassador to Prague Daniel Meron told the Israeli Foreign Ministry last week that the Czech Republic urged by Israel, had launched an internal assessment of the consequences of moving its embassy to Jerusalem.

Czech President Milos Zeman, considered a strong supporter of Israel, is in favor of moving the Czech embassy to Jerusalem in the near future, while Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis opposes the move.

Meron reportedly said, however, that Babis was under the influence of pro-Israel public opinion, and thus could be convinced to transfer the embassy soon, and recommended using the influence of Zeman as a persuasive advocate for Israel, pointing to Zeman's intention to celebrate the anniversary of Israel's independence in his residence on April 25.

Following the report, Czech Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Irena Valentova confirmed this week that the Czech Republic is considering the move.

"The Czech Republic has an open approach to the Jerusalem issue and will not make taboo of it. At the same time, we want neither to disintegrate the EU position nor to block a dialogue with Palestinians," Valentova noted.

"Everything will depend on the development of the peace process and on the situation in other countries that can with time, agree to open their embassies in Jerusalem," she ended.




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