Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman called Tuesday on Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi to use his contacts with Russia for the latter to agree to aggravate economic sanctions on Iran.
During a meeting in Jerusalem, Lieberman said Italy was a loyal and serious ally and told the Italian premier he appreciated his country's support of Israel and its positions in the international arena.
The foreign minister asked Berlusconi to work opposite the Russians in order to prevent the sale of weapons to Iran. This, in light of fear in Israel and the West of a deal between Russia and Iran for the sale of an S-300 advanced anti-aircraft missile system.
The supply of such missiles to the Islamic Republic may shift the balance of power in the Middle East and make it harder for Israel or the United States to attack Iranian nuclear facilities.
"Italy must take a leading role in promoting international legislation which would provide democratic countries with tools in fighting terrorism," Lieberman added. The two agreed that Israel will send Italy a proposal on the matter.
Berlusconi and Lieberman in Jerusalem (Photo: Flash 90)
Lieberman explained to the Italian premier that currently the international law does not address the war on terror.
"The international law is suited for wars of regular armies fighting themselves, whereas the current situation is different and does not enable democracies to defend themselves from terrorism in an effective way," he said.
The foreign minister offered the situation in Afghanistan, Iraq and Africa as an example.
Berlusconi heard similar remarks from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Monday.
"Humanity is facing one of its most difficult tests since World War II," he said and added, "The attempt by a radical, despotic, blood-thirsty Islamic regime to arm itself with nuclear weapons threatens the well-being of the state of Israel, the region, and all of humanity."