Sunday Nov 06, 201105:24 PM GMT
Peres says Iran greatest threat to Israel
Sun Nov 6, 2011 5:26PM
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Israeli President Shimon Peres
Israel's President Shimon Peres says Iran is the 'greatest danger' for the Tel Aviv regime amid a Knesset debate over a military strike on Iranian nuclear facilities.


“Iran is the greatest threat faced by Israel,” Peres said on Sunday while visiting a northern Israeli village, Ha'aretz newspaper reported.

The remarks come as Peres said on Friday that an attack on Iran was becoming increasingly more likely.

Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressed Knesset last Monday in an effort to garner support for a military attack on Iran over its nuclear program.

Supported by the defense minister, Ehud Barak, and foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman, Netanyahu argued that Israel should proceed with efforts to encourage the West to exert more economic and political pressure on Iran. He also emphasized that any action against Iran should be carried out in full coordination with the United States.

Israel, which is widely believed to possess over 300 atomic warheads, along with the US accuses Tehran of pursuing a military nuclear program.

Under pressure from Washington and Tel Aviv, the UN Security Council has imposed four rounds of sanctions against Tehran. Washington and the European Union have also adopted unilateral measures against Iran's energy sector.

While Israel refuses to allow inspections of its nuclear facilities or to join the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty based on its policy of nuclear ambiguity, Iran is a signatory to the NPT and has been subjected to snap International Atomic Energy Agency inspections due to its policy of nuclear transparency.

Israel has recently test fired a new long-range missile capable of carrying nuclear warheads. The test was carried out at the Palmahim air base in central Israel.

This three-stage Jericho-3 missile, which is capable of delivering a 750-kilo warhead to a distance, is estimated to have a range of up to 10,000 kilometers.

Paradoxically, the new nuke-capable missile, which can target many parts of the globe, is not considered a threat in the eyes of the West.

MP/HGH
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