Iran Could Unleash New Refugee Wave, Netanyahu Tells Merkel

06 June, 2018, 01:55 | Author: Diane Mills
  • UN force on the Israeli Syrian border June 2018

If Israel discovers that Iran has resumed the development of its nuclear program and is advancing it, "a US-led global coalition will threaten and then deal Iran a military blow".

Iran is to inform the United Nations nuclear watchdog in Vienna today that it plans to start the process to increase the country's uranium enrichment capacity.

It was also uncertain whether the opening of the centrifuge plant would have any significant impact on Iran's nuclear program, which continues to be closely monitored by the International Atomic Energy Agency.

Obama, Merkel, Macron, Netanyahu and other world leaders speak out after U.S. President President Donald Trump's decision to pull out of the Iran deal.

European firms, especially those from France and Germany, rushed to invest in Iran following the 2015 accord, under which Tehran agreed to freeze its nuclear program in return for an end to punishing worldwide sanctions.

Iran denies the pursuit of an atomic programme for military purposes.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said Sunday the US decision to withdraw from the agreement was illegal and he urged the other signatories not to follow suit.

More news: Unseen for weeks, Melania Trump tweets she's 'feeling great'

European signatories have suggested that the JCPOA should be renegotiated to cover Iran's ballistic missile program and to curb its spreading influence in the Middle East, buoyed by conflicts in Yemen, Syria and Iraq.

But President Trump dramatically pulled out of the agreement, leaving the remaining European signatories scrambling to save it. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the USA would re-impose its sanctions on Iran.

Merkel said she agreed that Iran's activities in the Middle East were a concern, particularly for Israel's security.

Katz's remarks come as Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu begins a tour of Europe during which he plans to discuss Iran's nuclear program with German, French and British officials.

Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman also slammed Khamenei's declaration that he had ordered preparations to increase uranium enrichment capacity Monday, according Hebrew media. "Yesterday he explained how he would do it - with an unlimited enrichment of uranium to produce an arsenal of nuclear bombs". But fears are growing in Tehran that European leaders will be unable to prevent Washington from reimposing sanctions on European companies, which would badly damage Iran's oil economy.

For all of Iran's fierce public riposte to USA threats of tougher sanctions, some senior Iranian officials see the US position as a "bargaining strategy" and believe the door to a diplomatic compromise should stay open.

"We are here to say hello to Netanyahu and remind him and the world of the dozens of unarmed Palestinians that have been killed by the Israeli army in the last month", said 19-year-old student Antoine, waving a flag expressing solidarity with the Palestinian people. "We will not allow Iran to obtain nuclear weapons".

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