- The Washington Times - Thursday, November 7, 2013

Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Thursday that a possible international deal of easing sanctions on Iran “would be a mistake of historic proportions.”

As Iran officials met in Geneva with negotiators representing the United States, Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany, Mr. Netanyahu said any deal that doesn’t completely dismantle Iran’s nuclear research program is unacceptable, the Associated Press reported.

“This proposal will allow Iran to preserve its ability to build a nuclear weapon. Israel is completely opposed to these proposals,” he said in Jerusalem on Thursday. “I believe that adopting them would be a mistake of historic proportions and they should be completely rejected.”

Sanctions had brought Iran to the brink of economic collapse, and the six world powers — also known as the P5+1 — have the opportunity to force Iran to comply, the prime minister said, according to the Times of Israel.

Any deal that falls short of dismantling Iran’s uranium enrichment program would reduce the likelihood of a peaceful solution to the crisis, he said.

Iran and the P5+1 were set to begin two days of talks on Thursday hoping to strike a deal for Iran to not only halt its nuclear development but cut back on its stockpiles of enriched uranium and plutonium, the Times of Israel reported.

• Jessica Chasmar can be reached at jchasmar@washingtontimes.com.

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