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June 16, 2015 11:50 am

Israeli Minister Steinitiz Confirms He Proposed Plan to Ship Assad WMDs to Russia

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Israeli Intelligence Minister Yuval Steinitz.' Photo: Liron Moldovan.

Israeli Intelligence Minister Yuval Steinitz.’ Photo: Liron Moldovan.

New York Times – The American-Russian deal that pressured President Bashar al-Assad of Syria to abandon his stockpile of chemical weapons two years ago was encouraged by an Israeli minister, according to a new memoir by a former Israeli ambassador to Washington.

The minister, Yuval Steinitz, confirmed in an interview Monday night that he proposed the deal that became both a signature diplomatic achievement for the Obama administration and damaged President Obama’s international credibility because he abandoned a promise to strike Syria if Mr. Assad used chemical weapons against civilians. Mr. Steinitz said he and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had not revealed their role for fear “somebody will say it’s an Israeli idea, Israeli conspiracy, maybe it’s a reason to stop it.”

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