Peres downplays differences between US, Israel

In an interview with CNN the day before his US counterpart arrives in Israel, President Peres says Israel and the US "basically support the same policy" on the Iranian threat, despite differences in timing.

March 20, 2013 02:47
1 minute read.
President Shimon Peres [file photo]

President Shimon Peres 370. (photo credit: Mark Neiman/GPO)


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President Shimon Peres said that while there may be some differences in matters of timing, Israel and the US basically support the same policy on the issue of Iran, speaking in an interview with CNN on the eve of US President Barack Obama's visit to Israel.

The president wholeheartedly put his support in the US president's policy on Iran, saying that he is "free of doubts" that Obama would use military force if necessary to stop preventing Tehran from obtaining a nuclear bomb.

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Click here for full JPost coverage of Obama's visit to Israel

"I do believe that the United States is following carefully the time and the progress," Peres told CNN.

Obama, who has urged patience from Netanyahu, said last week that Iran was still more than a year away from developing a nuclear bomb if it made the final decision to build one.

"So a year is an estimation," Peres said in reference to Obama's recent remarks. "If something were to happen earlier, I am sure we will pay attention to the change.

Turning to the notoriously frosty relationship between Obama and Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, Peres said the gaps between the two men are not as wide as portrayed, but rather "it is more appearance than reality." 

"I think they understand it even if they come from different philosophies, they go to the same goal," Peres said. "When it comes to the goal there are no differences."

Shortly before leaving for a trip to the region, Obama on Monday said now was the time for Iran to take "immediate and meaningful steps" to reduce tensions with the international community over its nuclear program.

Reuters contributed to this report

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