Wednesday, March 22nd | 29 Adar 5783

February 5, 2023 4:59 pm

Netanyahu: French, Israeli Positions on Iran ‘Have Drawn Closer’

× [contact-form-7 404 "Not Found"]

avatar by Algemeiner Staff

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and French President Emmanuel Macron during the former’s visit to Paris on February 2, 2023. Photo: Courtesy

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday said that Europe “identifies more with the Israeli position” on the Iranian nuclear issue, in an assessment shared following his recent meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron in Paris.

The focus of his “long conversation” with the French leader in Paris on Thursday was “our common position – to confront Iran’s efforts to obtain nuclear weapons and a nuclear arsenal,” Netanyahu said at his weekly cabinet meeting.

“Our positions have drawn closer than I can remember in some time,” the Israeli premier said.

“Europe identifies more with the Israeli position,” on the issue, he added. “The positions are not identical, but they are much closer.” Netanyahu noted reaching a similar conclusion during the visits of US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan to Jerusalem last month.

Related coverage

March 21, 2023 3:33 pm

European Jewish Community Unenthusiastic on EU Antisemitism Initiatives: Report

The European Jewish diaspora is unenthusiastic about European Union (EU) member states' efforts to fight antisemitism, according to a report...

Netanyahu met with Macron during his first diplomatic visit to Europe since re-entering the prime minister’s office in December.

Addressing Iran’s nuclear program at the meeting, Macron said firmness was necessary “in the face of Iran’s headlong rush, which if continued would inevitably have consequences,” according to a statement shared by the Élysée Palace.

Netanyahu in turn “stressed that deterrence with Iran and its proxies in the Middle East needs to be strengthened,” and urged “imposing significant sanctions” on Iran and adding its Islamic Revolutionary Guards to the European Union’s list of terrorist organizations.

Relations between Iran and the EU have further deteriorated as talks to revive the 2015 nuclear deal struck by Tehran and world powers have stalled. In a Friday statement, France joined the United States, United Kingdom, and Germany in calling out Iran’s “inadequate” response to a charge by the United Nations nuclear watchdog, which said it was not notified in advance of a substantial Iranian adjustment to some nuclear centrifuges.

In a separate meeting in France on Friday, Netanyahu gathered with some 60 French business representatives and executives, whose estimated joint capital is around $160 billion. “The investors, some of whom are already active in Israel, expressed interest in increasing their investments,” a statement from the Prime Minister’s Office read. “Others expressed great interest in entering the Israeli market, mainly in infrastructure.”

The statement pointedly added that “none of the participants related to the judicial reform,” in an apparent bid to counter concerns that a controversial judicial overhaul proposed by Netanyahu’s government would impact the Israeli economy. “I heard one clear message,” the Israeli premier maintained on Sunday. “‘We want to increase our investments in Israel.'”

Share this Story: Share On Facebook Share On Twitter

Let your voice be heard!

Join the Algemeiner

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.