Berlusconi: 'We hope that Israel doesn't attack Iran'

Italian PM reportedly doubts that sanctions will be effective, favors "a more gentle approach" with China and Russia's help.

October 22, 2010 11:06
1 minute read.
Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi

berlusconi GREAT 311. (photo credit: AP)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi reportedly said he hopes Israel does not attack Iran, and expressed doubts about the effectiveness of sanctions, according to Friday's Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, a German daily.

"Regarding Israel, we can only hope that the nuclear threat is not viewed as so great that Israel takes military action against Iran," Berlusconi was quoted as saying.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.

'Iran is secretly setting up banks in Muslim countries'
Iran, Saudi leaders talk after $60b. arms deal advances
Italy now Israel’s 2nd largest trading partner in sci-tech

Berlusconi was also quoted as telling Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung that, although Italy has participated in the sanctions, "I fear that sanctions will not bring success."

He said sanctions have tended to reinforce regimes in countries such as Cuba, and "a gentle and circumspect approach would be more helpful," the newspaper reported

Berlusconi identified Russia and China as countries that could pursue such an approach, and said he had asked China's Premier Wen Jiabao "to use his influence in this direction." The two permanent UN Security Council members have been more hesitant than Western nations about taking a hard line against Iran, and Russian engineers have helped Iran build a nuclear power plant.

Italy has supported UN sanctions despite its strong commercial ties with Teheran, but also has always tried to reach out to Iran by trying to get it involved in issues such as Afghanistan's future.

Asked if Iran can be integrated in the international community, Berlusconi replied: "We must at least try that — it is the only way to get Iran out of its blind alley."

Related Content

Bushehr nuclear Iranian
August 5, 2014
Iran and the bomb: The future of negotiations