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PM Netanyahu's remarks in Rome


I very much appreciate the Secretary of State's efforts to prevent a deterioration in the region.Attempts by the Palestinians and several European countries to force conditions on Israel will only lead to a deterioration in the regional situation.


Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made the following remarks in Rome:

"I would like to send my condolences to Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott and to the Australian people over the loss of innocent life. International Islamic terrorism knows no borders; therefore, the struggle against it must be global.

This afternoon I met with Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi. This was our first meeting since he was elected Prime Minister and it was very good. Israel and Italy have much in common and many joint interests and we decided to expand cooperation in very many areas and on all levels.

I come here from a serious conversation with US Secretary of State John Kerry. We discussed a range of issues including Iran, Syria, the war against ISIS and others. Of course, we also discussed at length the Palestinian issue. I very much appreciate the Secretary of State's efforts to prevent a deterioration in the region. I said that the attempts of the Palestinians and of several European countries to force conditions on Israel will only lead to a deterioration in the regional situation and will endanger Israel; therefore, we will strongly oppose this."
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PM Netanyahu Meets with US Secretary of State John Kerry in Rome

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, met with US Secretary of State John Kerry in Rome and said at the start of their meeting:
"The foremost security problem that we face as you said is Iran's quest for nuclear weapons. Preventing that is a goal I share with you and President Obama, and you have said, I think wisely, that Iran must not have a nuclear weapons capability, which means that they shouldn't have centrifuges or enrichment. They shouldn't have a plutonium heavy water plant, which is used only for nuclear weapons. They should get rid of the advanced fissile material and they shouldn't have underground nuclear facilities, underground for one reason – for military purposes.
I think you're right. I think no deal is better than a bad deal. I think a partial deal that leaves Iran with these capabilities is a bad deal. You wisely insisted there wouldn't be a partial deal with Syria. You were right. If Assad had said, you know, "I am ready to dismantle 90%, 50% or 80% of my chemical weapons capability," you would have refused and correctly so, and I think in the case of Iran, it is essential that it be made to live up to Security Council resolutions that demand an end to enrichment and enrichment capability and an end to plutonium heavy water capability toward fissile material for nuclear weapons.
I think we're very close together and I agree with you that the goal is to get it peacefully, peacefully. The best way to get it peacefully is to maintain the pressure on Iran. That's what got them into these renewed negotiations in the first place. The leadership of the United States and the President have shown on the issue of sanctions I think has been centrally important. I think it'll be a tragic mistake to stop right before that goal is realized. And I look forward to discussing this issue with you.
The second thing we're discussing all the time, and I'm not revealing state secrets if I tell you that we, the Secretary and I talk more or less every other day about these twin goals –is to advance the peace the Palestinians. That peace is premised on mutual recognition, of two states for two peoples, of the Palestinian state for the Palestinian people mirrored by the Jewish state for the Jewish people. I think that's fundamental for any peace, but equally it must be a peace that, as President Obama has said, a peace that Israel can defend by itself, for itself, against any conceivable threat. I think these are the two twin pillars for peace and I look forward to discussing how we can advance both goals in our discussions today and undoubtedly our discussions tomorrow as well."

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