JERUSALEM: Israel will not allow Iran to attain nuclear arms. Iran has no immunity anywhere. Our planes can reach everywhere in the Middle East — and certainly Iran, Israel’s Intelligence Minister Eli Cohen has said.
The words come as a warning from Jewish country to world powers that anything that Israel would deem as ‘a bad new nuclear deal between Iran and world powers’, that war with Tehran would be sure to follow.
Cohen said: “A bad deal will send the region spiralling into war.”
The development comes as US President Joe Biden explores a possible return to the 2015 deal to contain Iran’s nuclear program that his predecessor Donald Trump abandoned, Israel has stepped up calls for more sweeping curbs to be imposed on sensitive Iranian technologies and projects.
“Iran, which this week resumed indirect talks with US envoys in Vienna on reversing its retaliatory violations of the deal in exchange for the removal of sanctions reimposed by Trump, has ruled out any further limitations on Iranian actions,” ArabNews reported.
Quoting Reuters, Arab news said that Cohen remarked in addition to denying Iran the means of enriching uranium and developing ballistic missiles, world powers should make it stop “destabilising other countries” and funding militants.
The Vienna talks have been overshadowed by what appeared to be mutual sabotage attacks on Israeli and Iranian ships, as well as an explosion at Iran’s Natanz enrichment plant that Tehran blamed on Israel.
Cohen, in keeping with Israeli policy, declined all comment.
Israel sent senior delegates to Washington this week to discuss Iran with US counterparts. The White House said the allies agreed on the “significant threat” posed by Iran’s regional behavior.
The Israeli ambassador to the United States, Gilad Erdan, said the Biden administration would consult with Israel about any new nuclear deal — the prospects for which he deemed hazy.
“We assess, to our regret, that the Iranians will refuse such a discussion,” he told Israel’s public radio station Kan, alluding to Iran’s insistence on restoring the original deal, which Trump called too limited in scope and duration.
“But if it emerges that we were mistaken, and the Americans succeed in securing a discussion of a different, better deal, we will certainly be part of that discussion. We made that clear and the (Biden) administration welcomes this, of course.”
(courtesy: Arab News)