After Netanyahu orders IDF to continue preparing possible strike on Iran as Ministry of Defense allocates budget for preparations to deal with Iranian nuclear facilities
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon have instructed the army to continue preparations for a possible military operation in Iran, Israeli daily Haaretz reported Wednesday.
According to information leaked from hearings on Israel Defense Forces’ (IDF) financial planning for 2014, 10 to 12 billion NIS of the IDF’s annual budget are to be allocated to the preparations, similar to last year’s sum.
This indicates that the Israeli government is not removing the option of a strike in Iran from the table, despite ongoing negotiations between Iran and the P5+1 powers, that over the past few months have brought to certain understandings in regards to the Iranian nuclear program.
But this should come as little surprise, seeing how Netanyahu has repeatedly stressed his distrust of the diplomatic process with Iran and of the interim agreement that has been reached so far.
In related news, an overwhelming majority of US lawmakers Tuesday demanded Tuesday that President Barack Obama hold the line on Iran, as a permanent agreement regarding the Islamic republic’s contested nuclear program is under negotiation in Vienna.
Topping the list of “core principles” sought by 83 of the Senate’s 100 members was their demand that Iran not have the right to enrich uranium — a position rejected by Iranian officials.
“We believe that Iran has no inherent right to enrichment under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, (and) we believe any agreement must dismantle Iran’s nuclear weapons program and prevent it from ever having a uranium or plutonium path to a nuclear bomb,” they said in a letter to Obama.
But while the House also said Tehran would have to “abandon pursuit of a nuclear weapon” if it wanted further sanctions relief, the congressmen sounded open to a civilian nuclear program for Iran.
The six world powers including Russia and the United States temporarily put aside differences over the Ukraine crisis to meet Tuesday in Vienna for a second series of meetings aimed at transforming the interim deal into a lasting accord by July.
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