The United States and Israel need a “common strategy” as world powers negotiate a new nuclear deal with Iran, the White House national security adviser said on Wednesday.
Jake Sullivan spoke ahead of a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and other Israeli security officials in Jerusalem. He said the meeting came at a “critical time for our two countries on a major set of security concerns.”
World powers and Iran renewed negotiations in Vienna last month to restore an agreement to curb Iran’s nuclear program. Negotiations were put on hold last week to allow the Iranian negotiator to return to Tehran for consultations.
Bennett said that “what is happening in Vienna has profound ramifications for the stability of the Middle East and the security of Israel for years to come”.
The original deal, reached in 2015, offered Iran sanctions relief in exchange for restrictions on its nuclear program. The deal fell apart after the unilateral US withdrawal in 2018 and the reimposition of crippling sanctions against Iran.
Since then, Iran has resumed its nuclear program, enriching uranium and running centrifuges beyond the limits of the agreement.
Israel has criticized attempts to strike a new deal with Iran, saying the international community is giving in to “nuclear blackmail.” He says any new deal must make improvements on the original deal and that talks must be accompanied by a “credible” threat from the United States to use military force against Iran if necessary. .
Israel views Iran as its regional nemesis and says it will take all necessary steps to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons. Iran insists its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes.
The Hebrew daily Yedioth Ahronoth on Wednesday published an interview with the new commander of the Israel Defense Forces, who said Israel is capable of attacking Iran tomorrow and destroying its nuclear facilities.
“There is no situation that we are operating in there and I do not come home saying, ‘I have carried out the mission,'” said Major General Tomer Bar.