How was David Cameron appointed UK foreign secretary without being an MP?

The former Prime Minister has returned to government

David Cameron has been appointed uk foreign secretary
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Following the news that Prime Minister Rishi Sunak had sacked Home Secretary Suella Braverman this morning, Downing Street has confirmed a huge cabinet reshuffle within the UK government. 

Braverman faced backlash last week following an article in The Times in which she accused the Metropolitan Police of political bias during protests, with the piece running in the publication just days before the Armistice Day protests in London. Shortly after it was published, Braverman was criticised for stoking tensions and was officially fired on Monday morning. Downing Street confirmed she would 'depart from government' as The Guardian reports that an initial draft of her article was submitted to them - as is standard for any ministers - but that she had not complied with the edits. However, Sky News has since reported that it was her comments on homelessness being a 'lifestyle choice' which ultimately led to her dismissal. 

Replacing her as Home Secretary is James Cleverly, who was formerly Foreign Secretary, with that position now appointed to former Prime Minister, David Cameron. Cameron stood down as PM in 2016 immediately after the results of the Brexit referendum, and this unprecedented step back into frontline politics has caused widespread shock. 

How was David Cameron appointed UK foreign secretary without being an MP?

Considering he withdrew from politics seven years ago, many are wondering how Cameron is able to fill the role of UK Foreign Secretary given that he is not a standing MP. While Members of the House of Commons hold ministerial positions, Members of the House of Lords are also able to stand - meaning that Cameron will also be appointed as a Lord in order to take the position. He will be given a Barony and will be officially appointed this week, with the Palace confirming that they have approved the move. 

In a statement, the Palace said: "The King has been pleased to approve the appointment of the Rt Hon David Cameron as Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs. His Majesty has also been pleased to confer the dignity of a Barony of the United Kingdom for life upon David Cameron."

Following the announcement, Cameron took to X - formerly known as Twitter - to write: "The Prime Minister has asked me to serve as his Foreign Secretary and I have gladly accepted. We are facing a daunting set of international challenges, including the war in Ukraine and the crisis in the Middle East. At this time of profound global change, it has rarely been more important for this country to stand by our allies, strengthen our partnerships and make sure our voice is heard."

He added: "While I have been out of front-line politics for the last seven years, I hope that my experience – as Conservative Leader for eleven years and Prime Minister for six – will assist me in helping the Prime Minister to meet these vital challenges. Britain is a truly international country."

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Alongside his appointment, a number of cabinet members have quit including Education Minister Nick Gibb, Levelling Up Minister Neil O'Brien, Health Minister Will Quince and Transport Minister Jesse Norman. 

We will continue to update this story.

Jadie Troy-Pryde
News Editor

Jadie Troy-Pryde is News Editor, covering celebrity and entertainment, royal, lifestyle and viral news. Before joining the team in 2018 as the Lifestyle and Social Media Editor, she worked at a number of women’s fashion and lifestyle titles including Grazia, Women’s Health and Stylist, and now heads the Marie Claire UK news desk.