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Report: Netanyahu to give Iran ultimatum

March 4, 2012 at 7:34 AM

JERUSALEM, March 4 (UPI) -- Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is expected to deliver an ultimatum to President Barack Obama concerning Iran, Israeli security sources said.

When the two meet in Washington Monday, Netanyahu will warn Israel may take matters into its own hands concerning a strike on Iran unless Obama pledges to use U.S. military forces to prevent the Islamic Republic from acquiring a nuclear bomb, Britain's The Sunday Telegraph said Sunday.

Arab Spring protests and outcomes have significantly weakened Iran's clout in the region, The Telegraph noted. While Israel is aware Hamas in Gaza and Hezbollah in Lebanon are likely to retaliate any strike on Iran by waging massive rocket attacks on Israel, conditions for a military strike on the Islamic Republic are favorable.

Israeli intelligence estimates there are six to nine months before Iran's nuclear facilities become immune to a unilateral military strike and Israel would no longer be able to prevent Iran from becoming a nuclear power on its own, The Telegraph reported.

Ahead of the meeting between Netanyahu and Obama, a public campaign to pressure the American president to harden his policy toward Iran is under way, The New York Times said.

Senators are calling on Obama to lay down sharper criteria about when to act against Iran's nuclear ambitions, the newspaper said.

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