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Israel: Don't make partial agreement with Iran on nuke program

Oct. 15, 2013 at 1:56 PM
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TEL AVIV, Israel, Oct. 15 (UPI) -- Israel Tuesday warned world leaders meeting in Geneva not to make a partial agreement with Iran about dismantling its nuclear program.

Israel's security cabinet issued a statement cautioning against easing sanctions against Iran "when they are so close to achieving their intended purpose," The New York Times reported.

"Israel does not oppose Iran having a peaceful nuclear energy program," the statement said, noting "peaceful programs do not require uranium enrichment or plutonium production."

Speaking Monday at the opening of the winter session of the Israeli Parliament, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said easing the sanctions "will strengthen the uncompromising views" of Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, and be seen as "a significant victory."

"Iran is ready to give up very little and to receive a very lot" at the talks in Switzerland, Netanyahu said.

Yuval Steinitz, Israel's minister of international relations and of intelligence and strategic affairs, sounded a slightly more conciliatory tone.

He said Israel wanted the talks to succeed "on the condition that there will be a sufficient and satisfactory solution."

Steinitz charged Iran needed the Geneva agreement "urgently."

"If it is made crystal clear to them that if they want to save their economy they need to give up their nuclear program, at the end of the day they might do it," he said.

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