Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu accused world powers of caving in to the demands of the Islamic Republic as nuclear negotiations extend well past its June 30 deadline.
“It seems that the nuclear talks in Iran have yielded a collapse, not a breakthrough,” Netanyahu said at the start of the weekly cabinet meeting on Sunday. “The major powers’ concessions are growing.”
Among one of the more concerning concessions P5+1 negotiators are considering is the lifting of all sanctions in exchange for limited intervention of Iran’s nuclear program.
According to the prime minister, the current shape of the nuclear agreement would only “pave Iran’s path to the production of very many atomic bombs and it will also channel to Iran hundreds of billions of dollars that will serve its aggression and terrorism campaigns in our region and around the world.”
Comparing the Iran deal with past negotiations between the US and North Korea, which in no way deterred the dictatorial country from acquiring nuclear weapons, Netanyahu made clear that any agreement signed will only slightly extend the breakout time of Iran obtaining a nuclear bomb.
“It’s a bad deal,” the prime minister stated. “It is not less bad – in my opinion it is worse – than the deal with North Korea that led to a nuclear arsenal in North Korea. But this is both a nonconventional threat and a very large conventional threat against Israel, the countries of the region and the world.”
In Vienna, US Secretary of State John Kerry confirmed that a final nuclear agreement is possible this week if Iran makes the “hard choices” necessary. Speaking after this third meeting of the day with his Iranian counterpart, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, Kerry made clear that the US is ready to walk away from negotiations.
The secretary said there had been “genuine progress” made in talk but that “several of the most difficult issues” still remain. “If hard choices get made in the next couple of days, made quickly, we could get an agreement this week, but if they are not made we will not,” he said.
The current deadline to reach a permanent nuclear agreement is set for Tuesday, July 7, the date which the Obama administration must submit a deal to the US Congress for an expedited, 30-day review. However, European officials have warned that talks may once again fail to meet the deadline.
US President Barack Obama has threatened Congress that should they fail to pass the agreement, he will use his veto power.
According to a report on Ynet, Israel is already putting diplomatic and lobbying pressure on members of US legislators to crush the deal in its first round through Congress.