Iran can’t afford to walk away from the negotiating table, so the six world powers have the leverage to push for good deal that would halt Iran’s nuclear weapons program, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday in videotaped public statement issued from Jerusalem.
“Iran needs a deal more than anyone. Instead of making dangerous concessions to Iran, now is the time for the international community to reassert and fortify its original demands for a better deal,” Netanyahu said.
“We must not let Iran, the foremost sponsor of global terrorism, have an easy path to nuclear weapons which will threaten the entire world," Netanyahu said.
He spoke as US President Barack Obama and US Secretary of State John Kerry continued to publicly advocate for the framework deal agreed upon in Switzerland earlier this month to curb Iran’s nuclear program. The details of the agreement between Iran and the six world powers, including the US, will only be finalized in June.
Obama publicly chided Netanyahu for his continued opposition to the framework agreement when speaking with reporters in Panama on Saturday.
"I have repeatedly asked -- what is the alternative that you [Netanyahu] present that you think makes it less likely for Iran to get a nuclear weapon? And I have yet to obtain a good answer on that,” Obama said.
In Jerusalem on Sunday Netanyahu answered the question, by insisting that increased sanctions could led to a deal that would help safeguard the reign and the world from Iranian aggression.
“The two main components of the alternative to this bad deal: First, instead of allowing Iran to preserve and develop its nuclear capabilities, a better deal would significantly roll back these capabilities – for example, by shutting down the illicit underground facilities that Iran concealed for years from the international community,” Netanyahu said.
“Second, instead of lifting the restrictions on Iran’s nuclear facilities and program at a fixed date, a better deal would link the lifting of these restrictions to an end of Iran’s aggression in the region, its worldwide terrorism and its threats to annihilate Israel," Netanyahu said.
In Panama on Saturday, Obama dismissed the idea that sanctions would continue to be an effective tool and argued that the framework deal would be more effective than a military strike in halting Iran’s nuclear weapons program.
“It is more likely to succeed, not only than maintaining current sanctions or additional sanctions, but more likely to succeed than if we took a military approach to solving the problem,” Obama said.
“A large majority of people who are experts in the field say this is actually a realistic, plausible, meaningful approach to cut off the pathways for Iran getting a nuclear weapon.”
“A large majority of people who are experts in the field saying this is actually a realistic plausible meaningful approach to cut off the pathways for Iran getting a nuclear weapon,” Obama said.
Netanyahu pointed out that statements by Iranian leaders last Thursday, in which they insisted that sanctions be lifted before the deal is ratified in June and said they would not allow inspections of its military sites, indicate the unrealistic nature of the framework deal.“In the last few days, Iran has shown again why it can’t be trusted.”
“Iran insists on maintaining its formidable nuclear capabilities with which it could produce nuclear bombs. Iran insists on removing all sanctions immediately. And Iran refuses to allow effective inspections of all its suspect facilities. At the same time, Iran continues its unbridled aggression in the region and its terrorism throughout the world,” Netanyahu said.
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