On Tuesday, June 22, Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid appointed Asaf Zamir, 40, as the new Consul General in New York. Zamir, a member of Israel’s Blue and White party, is a former tourism minister and the deputy mayor of Tel Aviv. Zamir, who holds US citizenship, spent several years of his childhood in Florida, and holds a law degree from Tel Aviv University.

Last October, Zamir resigned from the previous government noting that he could no longer serve under then-prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, accusing him of placing his own political survival above the pandemic and the nation’s best interests.

“After a long period of time without a consul in New York, I am happy to appoint Asaf Zamir as consul,” Foreign Minister Lapid said. “Asaf has both professional and personal capabilities that will represent the State of Israel with honor and pride.”

“I thank Foreign Minister Lapid for his trust,” Zamir said. “I am excited and proud to represent the State of Israel and its citizens. This period of establishing new governments in the United States and Israel holds great opportunity and responsibility in fulfilling the role, and I look forward to it. Strengthening Israel’s status, bipartisan relations, and ties with the Jewish communities in the United States are important and complex challenges to our new government, and I am happy and full of motivation to try to contribute to those processes.”

Zamir replaces Dani Dayan, who returned to Israel late last year to run the New Hope Party’s list in this year’s election. “The Consulate General will be in the best possible hands,” wrote Dayan on social media, adding in Hebrew, “could not have expected a better heir to face the challenges of the role.” The post has been filled by Israel Nitzan who served as acting consul general in the interim. Nitzan was quite outspoken during the recent spike of anti-Semitism in New York.

By Shabsie Saphirstein