Daniel Taub

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Daniel Taub
דניאל טאוב
Ambassador Daniel Taub.jpg
Israeli Ambassador to the United Kingdom
Assumed office
June 2011
President Shimon Peres
Reuven Rivlin
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
Preceded by Ron Prosor
Personal details
Born 1962 (age 52–53)
United Kingdom
Citizenship Israeli
Alma mater University College, Oxford
University College London
Harvard University
Religion Judaism
Military service
Allegiance  Israel
Service/branch Israeli Defence Forces

Daniel Taub (Hebrew: דניאל טאוב; born 1962) is a British-born Israeli diplomat, international lawyer and writer who currently serves as Israel's Ambassador to the United Kingdom.[1]


Daniel Taub was born in the United Kingdom. He attended secondary school at the Haberdashers' Aske's Boys' School in Elstree, University College, Oxford, University College, London and Harvard University.[2] Taub immigrated to Israel in 1989. He served as a combat medic in the Israel Defence Forces. As a reserve officer, he served in the IDF's international law division.[1] Soon after arriving in Israel he worked as speechwriter for President Chaim Herzog.[1] In 1991, Taub joined the Israeli Foreign Ministry.[3]

Taub and his wife Zehava have six children.[2] They performed a song together at a party in honour of Israel's 64th birthday.[4]

Diplomatic career[edit]

Taub has held many diplomatic, legal and political posts in the Israeli Foreign Ministry.[2] He is an expert in international law, with specialisations in counter-terrorism and the laws of war. As Principal Deputy Legal Advisor of Israel's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Taub served as legal adviser to Israel's missions to the United Nations in New York and Geneva, and represented Israel in many multilateral fora.[2]

Taub was extensively involved in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, helping negotiate many of the agreements reached between the two sides, and heading the Israeli side of the Culture of Peace track of negotiations, travelling with his Palestinian counterpart to Northern Ireland to learn from the Irish experience.[2] He was also a member of Israel's negotiation team in the Israel-Syrian negotiations.[2] He headed Israel's observer delegation to the International Court of Justice hearings on Israel's security barrier,[3] represented Israel before the UN investigative committee on the Gaza flotilla incident,[5] and negotiated the entry of Israel's Red Cross society, Magen David Adom, into the International Red Cross Movement, after 70 years of exclusion.[6]

Ambassador to the UK[edit]

In 2011, Taub was appointed Ambassador to the Court of St James's[7] Despite some objections from the Foreign Ministry union that he was junior for the position,[7] colleagues praised the appointment as an "inspired and worthy choice".[8] Taub is the second British born ambassador to the UK from Israel. When he presented his credentials, the Queen asked him how it felt to be serving as ambassador in the land of his birth. He replied: "I said that I felt tremendously privileged that it fell to me to raise my children in their historic homeland after two millennia of exile, but I am also aware that in that arc of 2000 years the greatest period of opportunity for my family was found here in Britain, and I hope to express my appreciation for that by deepening ties of cooperation between our countries."[9]

Placing a strong emphasis on trade and technology links, Taub introduced the Bizcamp start-up competition in conjunction with Google[10] and was nominated for the Grassroot Diplomat Initiative Award for developing business and trade. Between the years 2011 and 2013, UK-Israel bilateral trade increased to $8 billion.[11]

Taub has also placed a clear focus on cross-cultural and interfaith activity, and has been invited to teach Bible and Hebrew study classes in Westminster Abbey[12] and at the Church of England Synod.[13] His outreach has included many cultural events reaching out to ethnic and cultural groups hosted jointly with other ambassadors, as well as outreach to the UK Israeli community,[14] in line with his philosophy that Israel is a house with many doors.[11]

Taub is a lecturer and public speaker,[15] known for his humour.[16] He has been interviewed widely on television including on Hardtalk,[17] CNN,[18] Newsnight,[19] Sky News,[20] and the BBC Radio 4's Today programme,[21] and was the first Israeli Ambassador to be interviewed on the BBC Persian service.[22] He also lectures widely in universities and policy institutes in Israel and abroad.[23] He has responded to occasional demonstrations against Israeli speakers at some British universities by increasing the number of embassy university visits, insisting that "when extremist elements try to silence us, our response must be to be even more active reaching out and making our case".[24]

Having grown up in the UK, Taub has a close relationship with the British Jewish community, and was responsible for envisaging the Closer to Israel programme adopted by Jewish community for Israel's 65th anniversary.[25] He is a popular lecturer at the annual Limmud conference.[26]

In addition to serving as Ambassador to the UK, in March 2013 Taub became Israel's first Ambassador to the International Maritime Organization which is based in London.[27]

Media career[edit]

Taub writes frequently on Israel and the Middle East, including articles appearing in The Times,[28] The Daily Telegraph,[29][30] The Guardian,[31] and the Huffington Post.[32]

Taub was the creator and chief scriptwriter of an Israeli drama series, Hechatzer, set in the ultraorthodox Hassidic community.[2] The series, described by Taub as "a cross between Dallas and the Chosen" set out to break down stereotypes of secular and religious in Israeli society. The popular 26 episode series and was met with general acclaim.[2]

Taub wrote Parasha Diplomatit, a book of diplomatic insights on biblical texts.[33]Taub is also the creator and chief scriptwriter of an Israeli soap opera about a Hasidic sect.[34]


"Grandstanding won’t win peace. Talking will", The Times 20 September 2011


  1. ^ a b c http://www.diplomatmagazine.com/heads-of-mission/3340-israel.html
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h http://www.thejc.com/lifestyle/lifestyle-features/55115/interview-daniel-taub
  3. ^ a b http://www.haaretz.com/this-soap-man-scrubs-up-israel-s-image-too-1.152110
  4. ^ http://www.thejc.com/blogs/jennifer-lipman/now-were-64-ambassador-taubs-children-steal-show
  5. ^ http://www.un.org/News/dh/infocus/middle_east/Gaza_Flotilla_Panel_Report.pdf
  6. ^ http://jewishmedicalassociationuk.org/previous-events/annual-dinners/2013-ambassador-daniel-taub
  7. ^ a b http://www.jpost.com/Diplomacy-and-Politics/Daniel-Taub-named-new-Israeli-ambassador-to-London
  8. ^ http://www.thejc.com/news/uk-news/50694/israels-new-envoy-daniel-taub
  9. ^ "Israel's new ambassador presents credentials to UK's Queen", Jerusalem Post
  10. ^ http://news.techworld.com/sme/3468667/manchester-firm-formisimo-wins-trip-start-up-nation/
  11. ^ a b http://www.thejc.com/lifestyle/lifestyle-features/88079/israel%E2%80%99s-envoy-daniel-taub-deploys-movies-and-high-tech-beat-boyc
  12. ^ http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/faith/article3531843.ece
  13. ^ http://www.timesofisrael.com/israels-envoy-to-uk-leads-study-at-anglican-conference/
  14. ^ http://www.thejc.com/community/community-life/114826/israelis-need-mix-uk-jews
  15. ^ http://www.thejc.com/comment-and-debate/analysis/55930/taubs-masterclass-speechmaking
  16. ^ http://www.thejc.com/news/the-diary/64351/a-long-wait-a-bar-mitzvah
  17. ^ https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/JustPeaceUK/conversations/topics/10810?var=1
  18. ^ http://amanpour.blogs.cnn.com/2014/02/07/israel-bds-boycott-daniel-taub-ambassador/?hpt=hp_bn9
  19. ^ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=10pwtDETArc
  20. ^ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dz7Nb9N4CTI
  21. ^ http://www.politicshome.com/uk/article/65869/daniel_taub_doing_nothing_simply_not_an_option.html
  22. ^ http://www.alondon.net/index.php?action=art&id=6847&lang=he_IL
  23. ^ http://internationalstudies.ss.uci.edu/node/899
  24. ^ http://www.thejc.com/node/67103
  25. ^ http://www.thejc.com/news/uk-news/102642/israel%E2%80%99s-65th-will-draw-us-all-closer
  26. ^ http://www.jhub.org.uk/jdov/portfolio/my-israel-in-ten-objects/
  27. ^ http://embassies.gov.il/london/NewsAndEvents/Pages/Ambassador-Taub-becomes-Israel%E2%80%99s-first-Ambassador-to-the-International-Maritime-Organisation.aspx
  28. ^ "Grandstanding won’t win peace. Talking will", The Times 20 September 2011
  29. ^ http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/israel/9648528/The-Palestinians-UN-ploy-is-just-the-latest-stalling-tactic.html
  30. ^ http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/israel/10076094/Boycotting-Israel-does-not-bring-peace-closer-or-benefit-humanity.html
  31. ^ http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2012/may/08/boycott-israelis-tuc-bigotry
  32. ^ http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/daniel-taub/palestine-gaza_b_2163015.html
  33. ^ http://books.google.co.uk/books/about/Parasha_Diplomatit.html?id=ovFQtwAACAAJ&redir_esc=y
  34. ^ http://www.themarker.com/advertising/1.183442