Israel Political Brief April 16, 2012: PM Benjamin Netanyahu: Talks with Iran Have Given it a ‘Freebie’



Netanyahu: Talks with Iran Have Given it a ‘Freebie’

PM Netanyahu meets U.S. Senator Joe Lieberman, warns against Iran using talks to further advance its nuclear program.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu addressed on Sunday the latest round of talks between Iran and six world powers, which were held in Turkey over the weekend.

Netanyahu, who met with U.S. Senator (ID-CT) Joe Lieberman, warned against Iran using the opportunity to advance its nuclear weapons program.

On Saturday, the European Union’s foreign policy chief, Catherine Ashton, said the talks have been constructive and that the sides will meet again in Baghdad on May 23.

Ashton said future talks will be guided by the “principle of a step-by-step approach and reciprocity.”

“My initial impression is that Iran has been given a freebie,” Netanyahu said during his meeting with Lieberman. “It’s got five weeks to continue enrichment without any limitation.”

He added, “I think Iran should take immediate steps. First, stop all enrichment, take out all the enriched material and dismantle the nuclear facility in Qom. I believe that the world’s greatest practitioner of terrorism must not have the opportunity to develop atomic bombs.”

Last week, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said it was now “urgent” for Iran to ease concerns over its nuclear program.

“We believe there is still time for diplomacy, but it is urgent that the Iranians come to the table to establish an environment conducive to achieving concrete results through a sustained process,” Clinton said.

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