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November 13, 2013 11:58 am

Netanyahu Rebuffs Claim That More Iran Sanctions Could Lead to War

avatar by Zach Pontz

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U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry meets with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Photo: U.S. Department of State.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu struck back Wednesday as the The White House warned Congress on Tuesday that slapping new sanctions on Iran could send America on a “march to war.”

“There are not just two possibilities on the Iranian issue: A bad deal – or war,” Netanyahu told the Knesset plenum.

“There is a third possibility – and that is continuing the pressure of sanctions. I would even say that a bad deal is liable to lead to the second, undesired, result,” he said.

Several U.S. lawmakers believe that enacting additional economic sanctions against Iran will give the U.S. increased leverage when negotiations between the Islamic Republic and six world powers resume next week in Geneva.

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A deal aimed at curbing the former’s nuclear program was close to being reached last week, but at the last minute it fell through.

Netanyahu publicly opposed the proposal, which would have allowed Iran to continue enriching uranium. But in his comments to the Knesset on Wednesday, the Israeli prime minister said he hasn’t abandoned hope for a diplomatic solution.

“It is possible to achieve a good deal to dismantle Iran’s military nuclear capability. This cannot be achieved by the proposal now being discussed in Geneva. That proposal would make a gaping hole in the sanctions through which the air could escape from the pressure of the sanctions. Iran is being asked to do very little. All of its centrifuges would be left intact; not even one centrifuge would be dismantled and the underground facilities would also remain,” he said.

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