Skip To Content
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.

Support the Forward

Funded by readers like you DonateSubscribe
Breaking News

Benjamin Netanyahu Demands ‘Better Deal’ From Iran on Nukes

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Wednesday it was not too late for world powers locked in nuclear negotiations with Iran to demand a “better deal.”

He made the comments before meeting in Jerusalem with the speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, John Boehner, a leading Republican and strong critic of the White House’s policy on Iran.

“Now is the time for the international community to insist on a better deal,” Netanyahu said in a televised statement delivered in English.

“A better deal would significantly roll back Iran’s nuclear infrastructure. A better deal would link the eventual lifting of the restrictions on Iran’s nuclear program to a change in Iran’s behavior,” he said, citing threats to annihilate Israel and accusing Tehran of fomenting regional conflict.

Netanyahu said on Tuesday that a framework agreement sought by international negotiators to rein in Iran’s nuclear program would leave it with the capability to develop atomic weapons within a year.

Iran denies trying to develop a nuclear weapons capability.

Six world powers and Iran went beyond a midnight deadline and were continuing to negotiate in the Swiss city of Lausanne on Wednesday, having failed to agree on crucial details such as the lifting of U.N. sanctions.

Israel, which is believed to have the Middle East’s only nuclear arsenal, is not a party to the negotiations.

Iran was expected to be high on the agenda of Netanyahu’s talks with Boehner, who is visiting the region with a Republican delegation.

Avoiding stepping deeper into controversy with the White House over the issue, neither Boehner nor Netanyahu mentioned the nuclear talks in comments to reporters at the Israeli leader’s office.

Boehner’s invitation to Netanyahu to address the U.S. Congress last month on the Iranian issue drew accusations that both men were pursuing partisan politics at the expense of traditionally wide support for Israel on Capitol Hill.

“The bonds between the United States and Israel are as strong as ever,” Boehner said. “Our two countries cooperate on many different levels and while we may have political disagreements from time to time, the bonds between our two nations are strong and they’re going to continue to be strong.”

Congress has cautioned it would consider imposing new sanctions on Iran if there was no agreement in Lausanne this week. President Barack Obama has threatened to veto any such sanctions moves.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has said that if a framework deal is reached, lawmakers would consider a bill that would require Obama to submit a final accord for Congress’ approval.

Engage

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.