Netanyahu brags he convinced Trump to nix nuclear deal in video clip
AP Photo/Evan Vucci
A video clip in which Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu boasts to colleagues about convincing US President Trump to withdraw from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal was aired on Tuesday by Israel’s Kan public broadcaster.
The video clip shows Netanyahu speaking to fellow Likud members saying “We convinced the US president (to exit the deal) and I had to stand up against the whole world and come out against this agreement. And we didn’t give up.”
Netanyahu then starts speaking about the Iranian regime, but “not the Iranian people, I have nothing against them” —until someone in the audience interrupts him saying “It (Iranian regime) will disappear with the help of God.”
“You said, from your mouth to God,” the prime minister responds.
Netanyahu has been a strong advocate against the 2015 Iran nuclear deal and the Islamic Republic in general, arguing it’s the biggest threat to regional stability.
When former US President Barack Obama succeeded in landing the nuclear deal with Iran and world powers, Netanyahu said it was a historic mistake and warned that Iran was not to be trusted.
That opinion was shared by Donald Trump when he campaigned for the presidency and later won the election in 2016.
Trump reiterated Netanyahu’s words by calling the nuclear deal a terrible deal, vowing to end it.
On May 8 President Trump did so, announcing the US withdrawal from the nuclear deal as well as reimposing sanctions against Iran.
Iran has since then been trying to salvage the nuclear deal by negotiating with the remaining signatories to the deal; France, UK, Germany, Russia, China and the EU.
However, Iran is ready to boost its uranium enrichment to higher levels if talks fail with Europe on salvaging the nuclear deal, according to a top official who spoke at a news conference in Tehran on Tuesday.
"We have of course adopted some measures in order to prepare the ground for eventually increasing the level of enrichment if it is needed and if the negotiations with the Europeans fail," Behrouz Kamalvandi, spokesman and vice-president of Iran's Atomic Energy Organisation said.
"We are of course continuing to carry out and implement our obligations based on the JCPOA," he said, referring to the 2015 nuclear deal with world powers that put strict limits on its atomic program in return for sanctions relief.
"But at the same time, taking every scenario into consideration, we are preparing ourselves," he added.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has listed 12 demands to Iran if a new nuclear deal is to be negotiated with the US.
Among the demands were that Iran must stop enrichment and never pursue plutonium reprocessing, as well as end its support to Middle East terrorist groups, including Lebanese Hezballah, Hamas, and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad.
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