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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah offer dire predictions on Middle East conflict.
Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Hassan Nasrallah, leader of Hezbollah in Lebanon, finally agree on something. Unfortunately, the opinions they share further cast a pall on Iran’s nuclear negotiations with world powers.
The leaders each issued warnings on Wednesday that failed nuclear talks with Iran would spell war in the Middle East.
Speaking to parliament in Jerusalem, Netanyahu said Iran is charming the P5+1 nations. He said Israel favors further economic sanctions as opposed to the alternative.
“I would go so far as to say that a bad deal could lead to the second, undesired option,” he said — meaning war, Reuters reported.
Iran is negotiating with the United States, Russia, China, the United Kingdom, France and Germany.
Talks that began on the weekend in Geneva are to continue Nov. 20. Iran says its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes, while critics charge they have a military motive.
Nasrallah said failure to strike a deal with Iran would spell “war,” Agence France-Presse reported.
“What is the alternative to a deal with Iran and the countries of the world?” he said. “The alternative is war in the region.”
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The Hezbollah leader spoke in southern Beirut to mark the Shia Muslim Ashura holiday. He also accused Sunni Saudi Arabia and Qatar of siding with Israel in preventing a nuclear deal, according to AFP. The Sunni nations are supporting the uprising against President Bashar al-Assad’s government in Syria.
“These countries reject any political solution that would stop the bloodbath and destruction in Syria. They also strongly oppose any accord between Iran and the countries of the world,” Nasrallah said. “We have two allies — Iran and Syria. We are sure of that alliance.”
According to reports, Iran would be allowed to sell billions worth of oil and gold in exchange for nuclear concessions.
It seems to counter tougher measures being proposed in the US Congress, prompting Secretary of State John Kerry on Wednesday to urge restraint.
He said reducing sanctions is crucial to Iran signing the deal.
“The risk is that if Congress were to unilaterally move to raise sanctions, it could break faith with those negotiations and actually stop them and break them apart,” Kerry said, AFP reported.
“What we’re asking everybody to do is calm down, look hard at what can be achieved and what the realities are.”
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