Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said on Thursday that Israel will act against Iran independently of the international community if required as Tehran and world powers are poised to restart much-stalled negotiations over its nuclear weapons program later in the month.
Visiting a military drill along with Defense Minister Benny Gantz, Bennett accused the international community of going soft on the Islamic Republic.
"We are dealing with Iran and its proxies, in Lebanon and Syria. It does not matter what occurs between Iran and the major powers. We are concerned by the fact that there is not enough firmness in the face of the Iranian violations; Israel will defend itself, by itself," Bennett said.
He further said that the passing of the state budget would allow the IDF to better allocate its resources and prepare for war.
"The state budget has been approved and this is especially important for the IDF, which can now aits resources accordingly, train continuously and intensively, and invest whatever is necessary for preparing for the next confrontation...
We are surrounded by security challenges and the goal is to utilize periods of relative quiet to build up strength. Therefore, we are preparing for various scenarios, near and far."
Gantz agreed with the prime minister and called on world powers to act to stop Iran's entrenchment in Syria and Lebanon and its expansion throughout the region while Israel must keep safeguarding its borders, especially on the northern front.
Approximately 3,000 soldiers from the Golani Brigade, the Armored Corps, the Artillery Corps, and reserve brigades, alongside Intelligence Corps and Air Force units, practiced maneuvering in mountainous terrain and combat in urban areas.
Talks between the U.S. and Iran to revive the tattered 2015 nuclear agreement will resume later this month after a five-month hiatus during which Tehran saw a hardliner assume the presidential post in Ebrahim Raisi.
Ali Bagheri Kani who heads the Iranian delegation to the talks in Vienna said he agreed with EU envoy Enrique Mora on a resumption of the talks on November 29.
Foreign Minister Yair Lapid met earlier in the week with U.S. Special Envoy for Iran Robert Malley and presented Israel's position which claimed that the relaunch of nuclear talks was just a charade meant to buy Iran more time as it continued promoting its nuclear plan.
Lapid shared with Malley concerns voiced by Israel's intelligence agencies over the resumption of the talks.