Minister Bennett: Israel prefers a diplomatic solution to nuclear Iran



In his speech in Washington, Economy Minister Bennett says he wishes Israel some day sign free trade deal with Iran, but expressed his opposition to the White House’s current outline of nuclear deal.

By Attila Somfalvi

Economy Minister Naftali Bennett delivered a speech on Thursday to the Brookings Institution in Washington, saying that Israel was in great support of a diplomatic solution to the issue of nuclear Iran, seeing as “if Iran achieves a nuclear weapon, we will be their first target.”

Senator McCain welcomes Bennett – Photo: Shmulik Almani

He nevertheless added that if the Islamic republic indeed managed to achieve nuclear weapon, Israel “will not be their last target,” as the Iranians are capable of reaching Rome, Madrid, London and New York.

The minister stressed that economic sanctions must persist, as “We’re two seconds from achieving our goal of dismantling Iran’s nuclear program; now is not the time to ease up.”


Reflecting Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu‘s approach, Bennett noted that Israel could defend itself by itself if forced to, but expressed hope to some day sign a free trade deal with his Iranian counterpart.

He told Ynet “We are trying to avoid conflicts with the (US) administration, but we say the truth – the current agreement will mean giving up on the possibility that Iran dismantle its nuclear program.”

The minister met with Republican senators to discuss the nuclear issue, including Republican senator John McCain and gave several interviews.


Yitzhak Benhorin contributed to this report

View original Ynet publication at:,7340,L-4453806,00.html