WASHINGTON – Upon meeting Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Monday in Washington, US President Barack Obama said that regarding the issue of nuclear talks with Iran, no options were off the table, including military action. Obama said Tehran must prove its sincerity with actions, not just words.
Netanyahu noted that sanctions against Iran should be strengthened if it continues to pursue nuclear program during negotiations. The prime minister added that credible military threat and sanctions have brought Iran to the negotiating table, and that pressure should not be reduced unless verifiable progress is seen.
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Netanyahu insisted that Iran was committed to israel's destruction, and must therefore be forced to fully dismantle its nuclear program. Netanyahu said that credible military threat and sanctions have brought Iran to the negotiating table, and that pressure should not be reduced unless verifiable progress is made.
The meeting in Washington is the first between Netanyahu and Obama since they met in March during President Obama's visit to Israel. Netanyahu is also expected to meet US Vice President Joe Biden at the White House, and US Secretary of State John Kerry at the State Department Building.
Netanyahu is in the US for the UN General Assembly, held in New York. He is scheduled to address the assembly on Tuesday, and the main message he is expected to deliver is that Iran's "charm" and its attempt to present itself as willing to negotiate is not to be believed.
In recent weeks Iranian President Hassan Rohani and Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei made various statements regarding Tehran being ready to negotiate about the nuclear issue in order to prevent a military intervention and war.
Rohani even made declaration of peace and recognized the crimes of the Nazis, as opposed to his predecessor Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who consistently denied the holocaust.
Despite all this, Prime Minister Netanyahu and leadership in Jerusalem warn that Rohani and Khamenei are merely stalling in order to develop nuclear weapons, and that their words are not backed by any actual action proving Iran is willing to neglect its nuclear program.
Reuters contributed to this report
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