Obama says tying Iran deal to recognition of Israel 'misjudgment'

"We want Iran not to have nuclear weapons because we can't bank on the regime changing," Obama says.

April 7, 2015 01:10

Obama calls Israeli demand that Iran agreement recognizes Israel a "fundamental misjudgement"

Obama calls Israeli demand that Iran agreement recognizes Israel a "fundamental misjudgement"


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WASHINGTON -- Requiring Iran to recognize Israel in a comprehensive agreement over its nuclear program is misguided policy, US President Barack Obama said on Monday.

In an interview with National Public Radio, Obama spoke to the suggestion put forth by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu last week. The Israeli premier says that Iran's behavior should fundamentally change before restrictions on its nuclear program are lifted.

A framework for a comprehensive nuclear agreement was reached last week in Switzerland between Iran and world powers.

"The notion that we would condition Iran not getting nuclear weapons in a verifiable deal on Iran recognizing Israel is really akin to saying that we won't sign a deal unless the nature of the Iranian regime completely transforms," Obama told NPR. "And that is, I think, a fundamental misjudgment."

"We want Iran not to have nuclear weapons precisely because we can't bank on the nature of the regime changing," he continued. "That's exactly why we don't want to have nuclear weapons."

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