Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett condemned the new Iranian president as the “executioner”, saying that Ebrahim Raisi’s election victory was the final “wake-up” before the world powers renewed their nuclear agreement with Tehran. .
Since taking the oath of office to the new coalition government last week, Bennett made the comments during his first cabinet meeting on Sunday.
On Saturday, the head of the hardline judiciary, Lai Si, was elected as Iran’s next president with 62% of the vote. This is historic. Low turnoutHe was sanctioned by the United States, partly because he participated in the mass execution of thousands of political prisoners at the end of the Iran-Iraq War in 1988. Raisi did not comment specifically on the incident.
Bennett said at the Cabinet meeting in Jerusalem, “Among all the people (Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali) Khamenei could choose, he chose Tehran’s executioner, which is notorious for Iranians and around the world. Notorious person, he heads the death committee that executes the death penalty. Over the years, thousands of innocent Iranian citizens.”
Iran and world powers resumed indirect talks in Vienna on Sunday to restore Tehran’s tattered 2015 nuclear agreement, which allowed Iran to lift sanctions in exchange for restrictions on its nuclear program.
Iranian and U.S. diplomats have been negotiating Back to agreement Since April, through a European intermediary in the Austrian capital.
After former U.S. President Donald Trump unilaterally let the U.S. withdraw from the agreement in 2018, the landmark nuclear agreement between the world powers that Israel opposed and Iran broke. Over time, this decision caused Iran to abandon all restrictions on enrichment, and Tehran is currently enriching uranium at the highest level in history, but it is still not up to weapon-grade level.
Bennett said that Raisi’s election as Iran’s president is “the world’s powers’ last chance to wake up and understand who they do business with before returning to the nuclear deal”.
He said: “These people are murderers, mass murderers: the brutal executioner regime must not be allowed to possess weapons of mass destruction so that it will not kill thousands, but millions.”
Israel has long expressed its opposition to the nuclear program of its arch-enemy Iran and that it will prevent Tehran from acquiring nuclear weapons. Iran insists that its nuclear program is intended for peaceful purposes.
Earlier this month, Israel’s outgoing Mossad intelligence chief stated that Israel was behind a series of recent attacks on the country’s nuclear program.
Al Jazeera’s Harry Fawcett reported in West Jerusalem that Bennett’s statement was aimed at international audiences and aimed to consolidate his qualifications to take a tough attitude towards Iran at home.
Bennett leads a broad coalition of political parties, ranging from Jewish ultranationalists to liberals, and an Arab party that will oust Benjamin Netanyahu, who has served as prime minister for a long time. He was sent to the opposition for the first time in 12 years.
“the fact is [Bennett] Considering that he is speaking to his cabinet, the comments made in English are very interesting, kind of [meeting] In it you will see his predecessor Benjamin Netanyahu speaking in Hebrew,” Fawcett said.
“So, this is clearly a message designed for the wider world-a message that aims to advance Israel’s benefit in terms of the possibility of restoring the Iran nuclear agreement.”
Postponement of nuclear negotiations
Officials said that late Sunday, Iran and the six-nation negotiators suspended negotiations on the resumption of the nuclear agreement and agreed to return to their respective capitals for consultations because there are still differences to overcome.
“We are now closer than ever to reaching an agreement, but there is still a distance between us and the agreement, and bridging it is not an easy task,” Iran’s top negotiator, Abbas Arakech, told state television in Vienna. .
“Tonight we will return to Tehran.”
More than a week after the latest round of negotiations, the parties to the agreement concluded negotiations with the Russian envoy, saying that no date has been set for the resumption of negotiations, although he suggested that they can return in about 10 days.
EU Political Director Enrique Mora, who coordinated the discussion, told reporters in Vienna that progress has been made in the sixth round of talks this week.
“We are closer to an agreement, but we are not there yet. We are closer than a week ago, but we are no longer there,” Mora said.
Sunday’s talks are the first since Lacey (who will take office in August) won the election.
Like Khamenei, Raisi supports nuclear negotiations as a way to lift US sanctions, which have weakened the oil economy of the Islamic Republic of Iran, sharply worsened economic difficulties, and aroused widespread dissatisfaction.
The new government hopes to gain a reputation for restoring any economic benefits brought about by the agreement, and the outgoing government may gain this before Lacey takes office.
Several Iranian officials told Reuters that the country’s current negotiating team will remain unchanged for at least a few months during Raisi’s presidency.