Barak: Israel will decide its own fate over Iran

In Germany to sign deal for 6th submarine, defense minister says Israel values allies' opinions but will ultimately decide for itself.

March 21, 2012 19:10
1 minute read.
Ehud Barak, Guido Westerwelle

Ehud Barak, Guido Westerwelle 390. (photo credit: Ariel Harmony / Defense Ministry)

Israel will decide its own fate with regards to Iran, Defense Minister Ehud Barak said Wednesday while meeting with German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle.

Israel views the Iranian issue in "a way unique to us, and we are attentive to all our friends, but in the end, the Israeli government will be the one who will have to take the decisions on Israel's security and future," Barak said.

The international community has been pursuing a diplomatic approach to the Iranian nuclear program. Sanctions, led by the US and EU, have considerably damaged the Iranian economy. Israeli officials, however, have maintained the right to act independently if it assesses that Iran poses an immediate existential threat.

During the meeting, Barak also said that there was a "growing recognition in the international community that the Iranian military nuclear program is consistently approaching the zone of immunity, and that sanctions need to be stiffened, while talks need to be speeded up."

Earlier in the day, Barak signed a contract for the purchase of a sixth submarine for Israel's navy on Wednesday in Berlin. Wolf Rudiger, state secretary of the ministry of defense, signed for Germany.

During the signing ceremony, Barak said that the new submarine would act as a "force multiplier" for the IDF, and assist it in dealing with growing security challenges.

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