Israel PM meets US national security adviser on Iran

Israel PM meets US national security adviser on Iran
Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett. (Photo: AFP)
OCCUPIED JERUSALEM — The US national security adviser held talks Wednesday with Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, who warned that negotiations in Vienna on Iran's nuclear program had "profound ramifications" for Israeli security.اضافة اعلان

Bennett's government has remained firmly opposed to ongoing international efforts to revive a 2015 accord that saw Iran agree to curbs on its nuclear activities in exchange for sanctions relief. 

Jake Sullivan, national security adviser to President Joe Biden, said his visit to Israel had come at "a critical juncture."

"It's important that we sit together and develop a common strategy, a common outlook, and find a way forward that fundamentally secures your country’s interests and mine," Sullivan said, according to an Israeli government statement.  

He did not directly mention Iran but the Israeli statement said the meeting focused on the Vienna talks. 

Bennett has called for the negotiations to be halted, accusing Iran of "nuclear blackmail" and charging that revenue it gained from sanctions relief would be used to acquire weapons to harm Israelis. 

Lead US Iran negotiator Rob Malley told CNN Tuesday that there are only "some weeks" left to revive the deal if Tehran continues its nuclear activities at the current pace.

Negotiations to restore the pact known as the Joint Collective Plan of Action resumed in November. 

Washington was a party to the original agreement, but withdrew under president Donald Trump in 2018.

The Biden administration has warned it may soon be too late to revive the JCPOA. 

"It really depends on the pace of their nuclear process," said Malley, the US special envoy for Iran. 

"If they halt the nuclear advances, we have more time,” he said.

"If they continue at their current pace, we have some weeks left but not much more than that, at which point the conclusion will be there's no deal to be revived," he added.

Iran says it only wants to develop a civil nuclear program.

Sullivan is also scheduled to meet Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah, in the Israeli-occupied West Bank.

The Palestinians cut off ties with the Trump administration, accusing it of pro-Israeli bias. 

The US official said the Biden administration had already "redeveloped" ties with the Palestinian Authority. 

"Now we're looking to strengthen them," the official said.  

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