Hot topics | Coronavirus pandemic

Israeli PM urges UN to hold Iran accountable for its nuclear actions

Israeli PM urges UN to hold Iran accountable for its nuclear actions

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett called on the United Nations Security Council to take action against Iran over its escalating nuclear program on Tuesday.

Bennett spoke at a conference in Jerusalem, where he suggested that Irans actions are the responsibility of every nation and must be accountable to the global community.

After talks between Tehran and world powers over reviving the nuclear deal which stalled earlier this year, Iran has breached the limits set by the agreement. As its stockpile grows, it has been enriching tiny amounts of uranium to its highest-ever purity levels, which are close to weapons-grade.

Bennett said he has made the case to other leaders, including President Joe Biden and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, that Iran is violating basic international obligations in the shadow of the now-deleted 2015 nuclear deal.

Merkel, who visited Israel on Sunday in her final official visit, said that Germany remains committed to reviving the agreement, a move Israel opposes. The Biden administration is also attempting to revive the nuclear deal.

Bennett said he expects that the world powers will bring (Iran) before the U.N. Security Council, hold Iran accountable for it, and hold it accountable. That, he added, "would be the peaceful way" forward.

Bennett spoke as Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid traveled to Washington, where he was expected to discuss Israel's Iran posture in meetings with Vice President Kamala Harris, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, and congressional leaders in both parties.

Bennett last month met with Biden for the first time as premier and president, with Iran topping the agenda. Were going to put diplomacy first and see where that takes us, Biden said. If diplomacy fails, were ready to explore other options, he added.

Israel has vowed to act unilaterally against Iran if needed. Iran claims that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes.

Israel's Defense Minister Benny Gantz said earlier this year on Fox News that Israel was still working on its Iran strike plans.

Israels recently-retired navy chief told The Associated Press earlier this month that the military has increased its activities in the Red Sea exponentially in response to rising Iranian threats to Israeli shipping.

Vice Adm. Eli Sharvit halted short of confirming a series of Israeli attacks and mishaps on Iranian ships. He described Iranian activities on the high seas as a top Israeli concern and said the navy is able to strike whenever necessary to protect the countrys economic and security interests.

Bennett's speech on Tuesday emphasized that he was pushing diplomacy first.

There are other options, he added, but thats the appropriate thing to do. Im going to keep it up over the next few weeks and months.

__

You may also like: