June 14, 2021
Israel’s new foreign minister and alternate prime minister Yair Lapid has said Monday that he and Prime Minister Naftali Bennett will work together not to allow Iran to acquire nuclear weapons.
Lapid stated that Israel must be prepared for a possible agreement between the United States and Iran on reviving the 2015 nuclear deal, adding that Israel must “prepare quickly.” He emphasized that the new coalition government will “do whatever it takes to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear bomb.”
The new foreign minister said he was always opposed to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). “It was a bad deal,” he said and added, “I opposed it. Israel could have, with a different approach, influenced it far more.”
Criticizing former prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s very close ties with President Donald Trump, Lapid emphasized that Israel’s traditional policy was equally close ties with both US political parties. He pledged to restore relations between Israel and the Democratic Party, while underlining that “The Republicans are important to us.”
Netanyahu was a staunch opponent of the JCPOA and once Trump was elected his relations with new administration is believed to have helped crystalize a tough policy toward Tehran that led to the US withdrawal from the agreement and the imposition of sanctions.