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July 14, 2015 12:36 pm

Netanyahu: Israel Not Bound by Iran Deal and Will Always Defend Itself

avatar by Eliezer Sherman

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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Photo: Israeli Prime Ministers Office.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Photo: Israeli Prime Ministers Office.

Israel is not bound by the nuclear agreement with Iran and the country will always defend itself, declared Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on the heels of the recently announced international deal with Tehran.

The Israeli leader called the deal, announced on Tuesday, a “stunning historic mistake,” and warned that a “cash bonanza” from lifted sanctions would “fuel Iran’s terrorism worldwide, its aggression in the region and its efforts to destroy Israel, which are ongoing.”

The Israeli leader cited a quote by Hassan Nasrallah, the leader of Lebanese Hezbollah — arguably the most powerful of Iran’s regional proxies — who said: “A rich and strong Iran will be able to stand by its allies and friends in the region more than at any time in the past.”

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Netanyahu, who has indefatigably rallied against the negotiations with Iran over the past several years, warned that “by not dismantling Iran’s nuclear program, in a decade this deal will give an unreformed, unrepentant and far richer terrorist regime the capacity to produce many nuclear bombs.”

He likened the Iranian regime to North Korea’s, which defied international inspections and verification in its successful quest for producing nuclear weapons.

Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely, the first senior Israeli official to comment on the deal following its announcement, said, “Israel will act with all means to try and stop the agreement being ratified.”

The head of Israel’s opposition, Isaac Herzog, announced on Tuesday that in light of the Iran deal he would head to the U.S. to “demand a dramatic package of security measures for Israel.”

Reflecting broad Israeli consensus against the Iran deal, Herzog even said that on security he was more “extreme” than Netanyahu. He said he intended to elucidate to lawmakers the risks and consequences associated with the Iran deal both regionally and for the world.

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