"With a nuclear Iran, the rules of the Middle Eastern game would not only change overnight; they would change irreversibly," visiting Italian Foreign Minister Giulio Terzi di Sant'Agata said Wednesday.
Speaking at the 2013 Herzliya Conference, Italy's top diplomat said that even if Iran acted rationally with nuclear weapons they would pose an unacceptable global threat.
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"Under its own nuclear umbrella, Tehran would be free to raise and lower the volume of regional tension as best suits its national interest," he said.
"In the end, however 'regional' the trigger, a nuclear crisis will always have a global impact. Should Tehran acquire nuclear capabilities, others would follow and the Middle East - the very doorstep of Europe - would enter this new regional nuclear race," Terzi warned.
Addressing the ongoing bloodshed in Syria, the Italian FM told the conference: "We can no longer afford delays in our action. No example is better than Syria to remind us that the (Bashar) Assad regime and its allies do not necessarily act under similar constraints.
"We are witnessing the emergence of fast-rising economic and military powers, in different regions, which pursue their interest with the power of a state and the flexibility of a non-state actor. These are decades of asymmetric diplomacy," he said.
Terzi concluded by pointing to Israel as a regional stabilizer stating that "Israel not only lies at their geographical center. It is also at their frontline. As the dust settles, and room grows for new ideas, Israel will be the first and foremost engine of a new path towards a more secure and peaceful Middle East."
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