The new United States embassy in Berlin is to open officially on 4 July (US Independence Day) after years of delays. It will be inaugurated in the presence of German chancellor Angela Merkel and former US president George Bush senior.

Rebuilt on its pre-Cold War site in Pariser Platz, the new embassy was beset by planning permission difficulties due to a US 1998 anti-terrorist law requiring all new embassies to be built 30 m from the nearest road. Berlin city council objected to the demand, pointing out that such requirements would entail cutting a swathe through the capital