Obama: 'No options off the table' on Iran


President Obama has reaffirmed his commitment to Israel and sent a warning signal to Iran in the final State of the Union address of his first term in office.

The president told America that the country's "ironclad commitment to Israel's security has meant the closest military co-operation" in history and vowed that he would consider every option to reign in Iran.

He said his government would safeguard "America's own security against those who threaten our citizens, our friends, and our interests".

Drawing attention to Iran, he said that President Ahmadinejad's regime was more isolated than ever.

"Through the power of our diplomacy, a world that was once divided about how to deal with Iran's nuclear programme now stands as one.

"[Iran's] leaders are faced with crippling sanctions, and as long as they shirk their responsibilities, this pressure will not relent. Let there be no doubt: America is determined to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon, and I will take no options off the table to achieve that goal.

"But a peaceful resolution of this issue is still possible, and far better."

Speaking as the first anniversary of the Arab Spring is marked, he said it remained uncertain "how this incredible transformation will end", but added: "We will stand against violence and intimidation.

"We will stand for the rights and dignity of all human beings – men and women; Christians, Muslims, and Jews. We will support policies that lead to strong and stable democracies and open markets, because tyranny is no match for liberty."

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