Dermer urges US to 'stay the course' on Iran

Following dismissal of John Bolton, Israeli ambassador to Washington urges US to increase the pressure on Iran.

Ben Ariel ,

Ron Dermer
Ron Dermer

Ron Dermer, the Israeli ambassador to Washington, urged the United States to “stay the course” and increase pressure on Iran.

The comments, quoted by JTA, were made at a pre-Rosh Hashanah reception at the embassy on Tuesday evening.

“What is important now is to stay the course, stand up to Iran’s aggression and continue ratcheting up the pressure until Iran abandons its nuclear ambitions once and for all,” Dermer said.

“Israel looks forward to working with the Trump administration to do just that in the year ahead,” he added.

The comments came on the same day that US President Donald Trump dismissed his National Security Adviser, John Bolton, with whom he disagreed on a number of issues, including diplomatic engagement with Iran.

Trump recently expressed an openness to meeting Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, though the Iranian President made clear that he will not meet Trump unless all sanctions against Tehran are unilaterally lifted by the US.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Tuesday that Trump could meet Rouhani with “no preconditions”, but he also stressed the US would be “maintaining the maximum pressure campaign” on the Islamic Republic.

In his remarks on Tuesday, Dermer otherwise lavishly praised Trump for his increased sanctions on Iran as well as for other moves, including moving the US Embassy to Jerusalem and recognizing Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights.

Dermer did not mention Bolton’s departure except to joke that it was a “boring” news day, noted JTA.