Netanyahu Wants to Discuss Iran With Trump as Tensions Grow
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is preparing to renew his assault on the Iran nuclear deal when he meets with Donald Trump, whose opposition to the accord overarches growing questions about its fate.
The U.S.-president elect has called the U.S.-led Iran agreement the “worst deal ever negotiated” and plans to nominate one of its leading critics, retired Marine General James Mattis, as defense secretary. Adding to the tensions, the U.S. Senate on Thursday voted to extend the U.S. president’s authority to impose sanctions on Iran, drawing swift denunciation from Iranian authorities.
Netanyahu, who clashed publicly and bitterly with the Obama administration over the deal, contended on Sunday that Iran has become a “more aggressive power” since it was signed in July 2015 and said he “looked forward” to speaking with Trump “about what to do about this bad deal.” Netanyahu spoke at a conference in Washington conducted via video link from Jerusalem.
People familiar with the Israeli leader’s thinking have said he is expected to urge revisions to the pact that would hold Iran more strictly to account, including with regard to actions outside the accord’s purview such as missile development and support for groups deemed terrorist organizations by the U.S. Netanyahu spoke to Trump after the American election, and said he was invited to come to the U.S. at the “first opportunity.”