January 24, 2012
The new round of sanctions will not stop Iran’s pursuit of a nuclear weapon, said Israel’s Defense Minister Ehud Barak in a radio interview Tuesday, Jan. 24, stressing that Israel’s hand was always near the trigger.
His comments aimed at cooling the optimistic notes emanating from Washington, Europe and some Israeli circles Monday after the European Union foreign ministers approved an oil embargo against Iran from July 1 and froze its central bank’s assets. The US then applied sanctions to Iran’s third biggest bank, Bank Tejerat.
Barak said that because Iran had not stopped developing a nuclear weapon Israel had not removed any options from the table. We say this “very seriously,” he stressed.
Monday, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu greeted the European sanctions by saying that they were positive but would not stop or interrupt Iran’s drive for a nuclear weapon.
The defense minister agreed that the Europeans had started out in the right direction. But he saw no reason to hold off until July before the oil embargo went into effect or to delay a boycott on transactions by Iran’s central bank. Oil shortfalls can be made up within weeks, Barak pointed out, from Saudi Arabia’s huge reserves, from the oil produced by Libya and from expanded Iraqi production.
This article was posted: Tuesday, January 24, 2012 at 9:40 am