Barack Obama reiterated the United States’ “commitment to Israel” yesterday, following Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s outrage over the international community’s nuclear deal with Iran.
According to White House spokesperson Josh Earnest, the US President called Mr Netanyahu to ease his concerns, stressing he would be in close consultation with Israel throughout the next six months of negotiations.
His phone call followed Mr Netanyahu’s response to the interim deal signed early yesterday morning, which he said was “not a historic deal, but rather a historic mistake.”
Mr Netanyahu said: “It turns the world into a much scarier place, because now the world’s most dangerous regime is taking significant steps towards acquiring the world’s most dangerous weapon.”
The six-month deal was struck in Geneva on Sunday after four days of talks between representatives of the P5+1 nations - the US, the UK, Russia, China, France, Germany - and Iran.
It is supposed to stop Iran enriching uranium beyond five per cent, neutralise any larger stockpiles of uranium, and halt development of the Arak nuclear plant.
In return, it will lessen sanctions placed on Iran, which will amount to economic relief of around £4.4bn.
Following the deal, Mr Netanyahu told members of parliament in their weekly governmental meeting that “the world’s leading powers have agreed to uranium enrichment while ignoring Security Council resolution which they led”.
He added: “Israel is not bound to this agreement. Israel has the right to protect itself in the face of any threat.”