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Zarif: Netanyahu is 'Desperate' Following Nuclear Deal

Iran's foreign minister says Israel's prime minister "deceived the world for a long time" about the Iranian nuclear program.
By Elad Benari
First Publish: 12/4/2013, 4:42 AM

Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif
Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif
Reuters

Iran's foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said Tuesday that Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has become “desperate” following the deal signed between the Islamic Republic and the West, reports The Associated Press (AP).

A report by the semi-official ISNA news agency quoted Zarif as saying Netanyahu had deceived the world for a long time but "he is desperate now and he does not know what to do."

Zarif accused Netanyahu of floating negative propaganda to harm Iran's image, but declared that regardless of Netanyahu’s actions, his country's "integrity will remain steady."

He was referring to Netanyahu’s continuous warnings that the deal signed with Iran is a dangerous one and would allow it to expand its nuclear program while receiving relief from sanctions.

Netanyahu’s position has put him at odds with U.S. President Barack Obama, who reportedly told the Israeli prime minister to “take a breather” from his criticism and shift attention to the terms of the final deal still under negotiation.

Last week, in response to speculations of possible Israeli participation in talks between Iran and world powers over Tehran's nuclear program, Zarif declared that his country will not participate in any nuclear talks attended by Israeli representatives.

“We will not take part in a meeting that the occupying regime of al-Quds (Israel) is attending,” he said, adding, “It will definitely not happen and we will undoubtedly not enter a room where a representative of the Zionist regime (of Israel) is present.”

Zarif described Israel as the “biggest threat to the region and the world” and called on the world powers to throw their weight behind facilitating the disarmament of the Middle East instead of exerting pressure on Iran.

The same day, Iran’s envoy to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Reza Najafi, slammed Israel and accused it of attacking its neighbors and committing atrocities.

"Israel, sitting on 200 nuclear warheads all of them targeted at Muslim cities ... is crying wolf about nuclear proliferation,” the envoy, Reza Najafi, told the UN nuclear agency.

“This regime (has) a long history of aggression against neighbors, atrocity against peoples under occupation and clandestine development of all kinds of” weapons of mass destruction, he declared.

After the deal with Iran was signed in Geneva, President Hassan Rouhani expressed satisfaction with it and said it has left Israel diplomatically isolated.