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Netanyahu: Israel Prepared to Deal with Syrian Chemical Weapons

  • Michael Bowman

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks at the weekly Cabinet meeting at his office in Jerusalem, July 22, 2012.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks at the weekly Cabinet meeting at his office in Jerusalem, July 22, 2012.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says his country is prepared to act to neutralize the threat posed by Syrian weapons of mass destruction in a post-Assad era. The prime minister was interviewed by two U.S. television networks.

Benjamin Netanyahu says Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s days are numbered.

“I think the [Syrian] regime will go," he said. "I do not know if it is days or weeks or months, but I do not think it is sustainable.”

Appearing on Fox News Sunday, the prime minister said he worries chaos in Syria could allow chemical weapons to fall into the hands of sworn enemies of Israel.

“Can you imagine Hezbollah - the people who are conducting, with Iran, all these terror attacks around the world - can you imagine that they would have chemical weapons? It would be like al-Qaida having chemical weapons. It is something that is not acceptable to us,” he said.

Netanyahu declined to specify what Israel might or might not do. “Do I seek action? No. Do I preclude it? No,” he said.

The Israeli prime minister repeated his contention that Hezbollah, backed by Iran, was responsible for last week’s suicide bombing in Bulgaria that killed five Israelis and wounded several others. Hezbollah has not commented on the incident. Iran has denied the allegation and says it condemns all terrorist acts.

Appearing on another U.S. television program, CBS’ Face the Nation, Netanyahu declined to comment on news reports quoting Israeli officials as saying they are working with British intelligence to prevent possible terrorist attacks at the London Olympics. Forty years ago, 11 Israeli athletes were killed at the Olympic games in Munich.

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