Obama calls Netanyahu, promises to talk over Iran

Obama calls Netanyahu, promises to talk over Iran
Mon Nov 25, 2013 11:10:12

US President Barack Obama tells Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that he promises to consult with him over a landmark nuclear deal with Iran that left Israel furious.

The White House announced on Sunday that Obama told Netanyahu, he wanted to begin consultations “immediately”, after the US and five other world powers reached a deal in Geneva on Iran’s nuclear energy program.

“The two leaders reaffirmed their shared goal of preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon,” the White House said.

Netanyahu had warned Washington that a diplomatic deal with Tehran would be “a historic blunder.” The hawkish premier responded angrily after the accord was struck, calling it a “horrible mistake.” He added that Israel would not be bound by it.

The deal was announced on Sunday morning following four days of intensive talks between Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council -- the US, Britain, China, France, Russia -- plus Germany.

Obama reassured Netanyahu that the United States “will remain firm in our commitment to Israel, which has good reason to be skeptical about Iran’s intentions.”

The two agreed to stay in close contact over the next six months as nuclear talks progressed.

The White House called the nuclear agreement an "initial, six-month step." Over the coming six months, Iran and the six powers will try to reach a final comprehensive deal.

As part of the interim deal, Iran has agreed to limit certain aspects of its nuclear activities, and the United States and its allies have agreed to lift some of the economic sanctions and offer access to a portion of the revenue that Tehran has been denied through these sanctions. No additional sanctions will be imposed.

The deal was sealed with astonishing speed coming in just the third round of talks over less than two months despite aggressive lobbying campaign by Israel to discredit the negotiations.


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