Israel Says ‘Historic mistake’; Gulf States ‘lose sleep’

TEL AVIV: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has slammed the international deal over Iran’s nuclear program, branding it a “historic mistake.” He accused the P5+1 of allowing Tehran a step further “towards obtaining the world’s most dangerous weapon.”

Netanyahu condemned the deal at a cabinet meeting on Sunday and said the world has become a more dangerous place.

“What was achieved last night in Geneva is not a historic agreement, it was a historic mistake,” Netanyahu told his cabinet. “Today the world has become a much more dangerous place because the most dangerous regime in the world took a significant step towards obtaining the world’s most dangerous weapon.”

“Israel is not committed by this agreement,” Netanyahu told his Cabinet. “The regime in Iran is committed to destroying Israel. [But] Israel has the right and obligation to defend itself from any threat, [and] will not allow Iran to develop a military nuclear capability.”

Netanyahu said that the international community had actually “agreed for the first time to uranium enrichment in Iran, while ignoring Security Council resolutions that they themselves promoted.”

He also reiterated that military action against Iran was possible, but Civil Defense Minister Gilad Erdan warned that the Geneva deal “makes it much more difficult in the diplomatic sphere to talk about a military option.”

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman told Sunday’s Cabinet meeting that the Geneva accord was Tehran’s “greatest diplomatic triumph” since the Islamic Revolution of 1979. 

Intelligence Minister Yuval Steinitz, in charge of monitoring Iran’s nuclear program, has said there is no reason for the world to be celebrating.

Gulf States ‘lose sleep’

Earlier reports said the Saudis are furious and are willing to give Israel all the help it needs to scuttle the deal.

A foreign policy adviser to the Saudi Arabian government, speaking to Reuters on condition of anonymity, said that Arab states do not welcome the Geneva nuclear deal. So far, Riyadh has made no official response.

Just hours before the Geneva deal was signed, the rulers of Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Kuwait met late Saturday night to discuss “issues of interest to the three nations,” Reuters reported.

Abdullah al-Askar , the chairman of Saudi Arabia’s Shura Council, an advisory body to King Abdullah, said that Tehran had “an ugly agenda in the region” and expressed concern that Iran could seek to gain the upper hand in regional politics in return for mothballing its nuclear program.

“I am afraid Iran will give up something on [its nuclear program] to get something else from the major powers in terms of regional politics. And I’m worrying about giving Iran more space or a freer hand in the region,” al-Askar said, adding that the people of the region “know Iranian policies and Iranian ambitions” and are afraid that Tehran might “interfere in the politics of many countries in the region.”

“No one in the region will sleep and assume things are going smoothly,” al-Askar said.

“I think Saudi Arabia will go ahead if Iran goes ahead [and gets a nuclear weapon],” al-Askar said. “I think Egypt, maybe Turkey, Saudi Arabia, maybe the Emirates, would go ahead and acquire the same technology. This will open wide the door to weaponization.”

Saudi Arabia may even cooperate with Israel in an attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities. 

Earlier this month, the Sunday Times reported that Saudi Arabia agreed to allow Israel use of its air space. The Saudis said they would provide drones, tanker planes and helicopters for an Israeli attack on Iran. The newspaper said Mossad was working closely with Saudi intelligence and they were making preparations in the event a deal was reached in Switzerland. “Once the Geneva agreement is signed, the military option will be back on the table. The Saudis are furious and are willing to give Israel all the help it needs,” a source said.

Israel which is widely believed to be the only power possessing the atomic bombs in the Middle East has consistently called on the international community to strip Iran of its nuclear enrichment capabilities  RT

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