Israeli Officials: Iran Deal an 'Historic Mistake'

Israeli officials say new framework deal with Iran "will make the world far more dangerous." Lapid, Herzog and Livni speak out as well.

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Elad Benari,

Press conference at Lausanne
Press conference at Lausanne
Reuters

Left and right in Israel were on Thursday night united in their opposition to the new framework agreement reached between Iran and six world powers on Tehran’s nuclear program.

Israeli government officials said that the framework deal will be remembered as a "historic mistake".

"If an agreement is reached on the basis of this framework, it is an historic mistake which will make the world far more dangerous," said the officials, briefing journalists on condition of anonymity.

"It is a bad framework which will lead to a bad and dangerous agreement. The framework gives international legitimacy to Iran's nuclear program, the only aim of which is to produce a nuclear bomb," they added.

Meanwhile, Yesh Atid chairman MK Yair Lapid wrote on Facebook that “there is no opposition and coalition when it comes to the Iranian nuclear issue.”

“We all share the concern that the Iranians will bypass [the agreement], and Israel must protect its security interests. The ayatollah regime in Iran has been engaged in years of fraud and deception and promotes its nuclear program under the nose of the West,” he continued

Lapid said that he is convinced that Iran's leaders will try to deceive the international community as they did in the past.

"There is no basis for determining that today Iran was prevented from achieving nuclear weapons. Israel should cooperate with the United States and the international community to ensure that there is no case of deception which endangers Israel's security and the security of the world,” he wrote.

MKs Yitzhak Herzog and Tzipi Livni, heads of the “Zionist Union”, said that “we are entering a new phase in dealing with the Iranian nuclear threat.”

"We must remember that the main part is yet to come and we must ensure that the final agreement will set the Iranian nuclear program back so as to prevent them from acquiring nuclear weapons and to ensure Israel's security interests,” they added.

MK Amir Peretz, also of the “Zionist Union”, said that the framework agreement should raise concern in Israel.

"The prime minister should establish teams that include representatives of all factions from the coalition and the opposition, who will cooperate with one another and promote the Israeli position in both public and discretionary ways," he said.

MK Yariv Levin (Likud), head of the Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, warned that the framework is bad and dangerous to the world, to the region and to Israel.

"The agreement, which is based on deception, will turn Iran into a nuclear threshold state and give an unprecedented boost to Iran's efforts to take control of large parts of the Middle East,” said Levin.

"Given the blindness of Western leaders, Israel will continue to fight in a determined manner to halt the Iranian nuclear program and fight the radical Islamic terrorism sponsored by it," he added.

Responding to the agreement earlier, Jewish Home chairman Naftali Bennett said that Iran had “received today an official kosher stamp for its illicit nuclear program.”

“This is a regime that cannot be trusted and which has already violated consecutive UN resolutions. Today's deal paves the way for Iran to eventually obtain a nuclear weapon, to further destabilize the Middle East and to continue spreading terror across the globe,” he warned.

“Today, it is important to stress: Deal or no deal, Israel will do what is needed to protect itself and its citizens,” said Bennett.