Bennett meeting Johnson, Macron in Glasgow after G20 meeting on Iran

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett is expected to meet UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and French President Emmanuel Macron.

  Prime Minister Naftali Bennett at the cabinet meeting, October 17, 2021.  (photo credit: ALEX KOLOMOISKY / POOL)
Prime Minister Naftali Bennett at the cabinet meeting, October 17, 2021.
(photo credit: ALEX KOLOMOISKY / POOL)

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett is set to meet with nine world leaders on the sidelines of the UN Climate Conference (COP26) in Glasgow next week, including UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and French President Emmanuel Macron, a day after their meeting on Iran negotiations at the G20 summit.

The G20 summit will be held on Saturday and Sunday in Rome, and the high-level meeting of COP26, as the climate conference is called, will be on Monday and Tuesday in Glasgow.

There is a meeting on the Iran nuclear talks planned for the sidelines of the G20. All the parties to the 2015 Iran Deal except for Iran G20 members – the US, UK, France, Germany, China and Russia.

The meeting comes nearly five months after Iran walked away from two months of negotiations to return to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), as the 2015 deal is known, together with the US.

In recent days, following a meeting with the EU’s negotiator Enrique Mora in Brussels, Iranian nuclear negotiator Ali Bagheri Kani said they will be willing to resume talks next month. Iran refused to meet with the E3 – France, Germany and the UK – as a group, only separately, and the European states would not agree to that.

LEADERS POSE for a photo during the G20 summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in November. (credit: REUTERS)LEADERS POSE for a photo during the G20 summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in November. (credit: REUTERS)

Bennett and other top Israeli officials have expressed concern that Iran took advantage of the time since it left negotiations in June to advance its nuclear program and that a return to the JCPOA would be ineffective in constraining it.

The meeting with Macron also comes after reports that Israeli cybersecurity company NSO’s Pegasus software was used to hack the French president’s phone. The software is marketed with authorization from the Defense Ministry, and Defense Minister Benny Gantz was dispatched to France soon after to explain that the government did not know other governments were violating the conditions set for using Pegasus.

The other leaders Bennett plans to meet at COP26 are Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi, Crown Prince and Prime Minister of Bahrain Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernández, and NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg.

Hernandez visited Israel and met Bennett earlier this year, when he opened Honduras’s embassy to Israel in Jerusalem.