PM: Meeting with Obama to focus on Iran

At weekly cabinet meeting, PM says leaders will discuss changes in region, including "atrocious massacre" in Syria.

By JPOST.COM STAFF
February 26, 2012 12:43
2 minute read.
PM Netanyahu speaks at cabinet meeting

Netanyahu superman hands ata cabinet meeting 390. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)

 
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Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said Sunday that his upcoming meeting with US President Barack Obama in Washington scheduled for March 5 will largely center around Iran's continued development of its nuclear program.

Speaking at the opening of the weekly cabinet meeting on Sunday, Netanyahu said, "Our region is volatile and quickly changing in the North, South and East, including the atrocious massacre we are seeing in Syria against innocent civilians. All of these subjects will be raised at the meeting, but one issue will be central: the increasing power of Iran."

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Netanyahu's comments came after the International Atomic Energy Agency released a report on Friday, which said that Iran has sharply stepped up its controversial uranium enrichment drive.

The IAEA report to member states showed Iran had carried out a significant expansion of activities at its main enrichment plant near the central city of Natanz, and also increased work at the Fordow underground facility.

Enriched uranium can be used to fuel nuclear power plants, which is Iran's stated aim, or provide material for bombs if refined much further, which the West suspects is Tehran's ultimate aim.

Netanyahu stated on Saturday that the IAEA report proves that Iran is continuing its nuclear program "without let-up," despite interantional sanctions levied against the Islamic republic.

Iran "is enriching uranium to a high level of 20%, while grossly ignoring the demands of the international community," Netanyahu said in a written statement.

Netanyahu was scheduled to travel to the United States next week, where he will address the pro-Israel lobby AIPAC's annual policy conference, which will be held from March 4-6. The March 5 meeting between Netanyahu and Obama will mark the first face-to-face-conversation between the leaders since they met on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in September.

Click here for full Jpost coverage of the Iranian threat

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