Israel: Easing up on Iran 'historic mistake'

Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu says easing pressure on Iran over nuclear programme a "historic mistake".

    Netanyahu wants the international community to 'keep up the pressure' on Iran [Reuters]
    Netanyahu wants the international community to 'keep up the pressure' on Iran [Reuters]

    Easing pressure on Iran over its nuclear programme at this stage would be a "historic mistake," Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has said.

    "It would be a historic mistake to ease the pressure on Iran a moment before the sanctions achieve their objective," he said on Monday at the opening of the Israeli parliament's winter session.

    In remarks a day before world powers hold a fresh round of talks with Iran over its nuclear programme, which Israel and much of the West believes is a front for building a weapons capacity, Netanyahu issued a stark warning over any move to ease sanctions.

    "Particularly at this moment we must not give up on them, we must keep up the pressure," he said.

    Any move to let up on Iran would only strengthen its "uncompromising elements" and its supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, "will be perceived as the winner," Netanyahu said.

    The two-day meeting which begins in Geneva on Tuesday will be the first such nuclear talks since Iran's President Hassan Rouhani, a reputed moderate, took office in August.

    Rouhani has pledged to engage constructively to resolve the decade-long dispute over Iran's nuclear drive and ultimately secure the lifting of crippling Western sanctions.

    The West has responded positively to Rouhani's overtures sparking Israeli fears of an easing of world pressure on the Islamic republic's nuclear programme.

    Israel has refused to rule out a military strike to prevent Iran from going nuclear, with Netanyahu telling the UN General Assembly earlier this month that the Jewish state would act unilaterally if necessary.

    SOURCE: AFP


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    World Cup 2018 quiz: How big a football fan are you?

    World Cup 2018 quiz: How big a football fan are you?

    Answer as many correct questions in 90 seconds to win the World Cup with your favourite team.

    The shocking story of Israel's disappeared babies

    The shocking story of Israel's disappeared babies

    New information has come to light about thousands of mostly Yemeni children believed to have been abducted in the 1950s.

    Stories from the sex trade

    Stories from the sex trade

    Dutch sex workers, pimps and johns share their stories.