News / Middle East

Iran Nuclear Deal Draws Israeli Criticism, Saudi Silence

VOA News
Iran's nuclear agreement with world powers has drawn strong criticism from Israel and silence from its main Gulf rival, Saudi Arabia.
 
Under the deal reached in Geneva early Sunday, Iran must limit its enrichment of uranium and freeze reactor construction.
 
Israel and Saudi Arabia have long feared Iran will divert those activities to make atomic weapons that could threaten their interests.  Iran says its nuclear program is peaceful.
 
In return for Iran's concessions, the United States and five other world powers agreed to ease some international sanctions on Iran's economy.
 
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told the Israeli Cabinet the Geneva agreement is a "historic mistake" that makes the world "a much more dangerous place."  Israel wants more sanctions on Iran and a complete dismantling of its nuclear facilities.
 
The rulers of Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Kuwait met Saturday as Iran and the world powers finalized the nuclear deal.
 
None of the three Gulf states had commented on the agreement by late Sunday.  But Sunni Arab Gulf leaders have expressed concerns in the past about what they see a campaign by Shi'ite Iran to boost its regional influence.
 
Israeli leaders see a nuclear-armed Iran as a threat to their nation's existence due to Iran's frequent calls for Israel's demise. Netanyahu said Israel will "not allow Iran to have a nuclear weapons capability."
 
President Barack Obama offered reassurance late Saturday, saying Washington's commitment to Israel and to its Gulf partners will "remain firm."  He also said those nations have "good reason to be skeptical about Iran's intentions."
 
In an interview with CNN, Secretary of State John Kerry said the deal with Iran will make Israel "safer" because it is designed to expand the amount of time Iran would need to make a nuclear weapon.
 
Two Gulf states gave a cautious welcome to the Geneva agreement. The United Arab Emirates expressed hope that it will lead to a permanent deal that preserves stability in the region and protects it from nuclear proliferation. Bahrain said it hopes there will be an end to "fear" in the region.
 
The deal also won praise from Iran's neighbor, Iraq, and main regional ally, Syria, two Arab nations not led by Sunnis.
 
Iraq's Shi'ite-led government called the agreement a step forward for solving regional problems.  The government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said the deal is proof that negotiations are the best way to resolve a conflict.
 
Assad is a member of the Alawite sect of Shia Islam.  Iran has been supporting him as he fights off a two-year long rebellion against his autocratic rule.
 
The government of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas hailed the Iran nuclear deal as an "important message for Israel to realize that peace is the only option in the Middle East."  Israel is believed to be the only nuclear-armed nation in the region.  It neither confirms nor denies that status.
 
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon welcomed the Geneva pact and urged the governments involved to "do everything possible to build on this encouraging start."

You May Like

Obama: Alaskans Feel Signs of Climate Change

They're seeing bigger storm surges as sea ice melts, more wildfires, erosion of glaciers, shorelines More

1855 Slave Brochure Starkly Details Sale of Black Americans

Document lists entire families that were up for sale in New Orleans, offering graphic insight into the slavery trade More

Katrina Brought Enduring Changes to New Orleans

The city’s recovery is the result of the people and culture the city is famous for, as well as newcomers and start-up industries More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Laura O'Donnell from: USA
November 25, 2013 6:46 AM
You can just hear the obsession of the Iranians with Israel's sophistication... - the pure envy and jealousy and hate of it... Russia knows what Israel has... and its far more sophisticated than anyone pretend to understand... but listen to the Iranians: writing as "Igor" from "Russia" oozing with envy and jealousy. its almost a delight to read... listening to the Iranians here is like looking at a fetid gangrenous decay... it even smell Iranian...
In Response

by: V. from: India
November 25, 2013 7:57 AM
Laura, I totally agree with you. Their hate reduces them to imbecility. "It even smell Iranian..." LOL
In Response

by: Marcia from: USA
November 25, 2013 7:35 AM
"It even smells Iranian..." - Yes it does, Laura!!! and that stench i do not want anywhere near my children. I don't want Iranians or Hizbulla or any of the various metastatic combinations of this Islamic filth anywhere near here. GET OUT OF THIS COUNTRY!!!

by: Yoshi from: Sapporo
November 25, 2013 1:57 AM
How come US has right to enrich and Iran has not the same right? It could be reasonable if Israel, to tell the truth, has no nukes. Both side's lack of right to enrich would bring peace in the Middle East. Does Israel really have nuclear weapons? Is not it a disguise of NATO for Israel to have nukes? I believe the US does not stands by Israel 100 percent so that US must not have allowed Israel to mount nukes. Thank you.
In Response

by: mdil4396 from: Australia
November 25, 2013 5:56 AM
All are equal bur some are more equal than others. You are absolutely correct.. Why should the US, UK France etc be allowed to enrich and possess nuclear weapons but. Not Iran? Why are thewe countries allowing Israel to possess weapons if mass destruction, including nuclear but not Syria and Iran?

by: Igor from: Russia
November 24, 2013 11:52 PM
Even a child can understand why Israel is so angry. Because Iran has signed the nuclear agreement with world's powers so the world will in turn pay much more attention to Israel's nuclear weapon program because it is a sole threat to the security of the Middle East. After Iran's agreement, Israel will have to abandon its nuclear weapons under the supervison of the UN inspectors or it will face international criticism and sactions.
We will never recognize Israel as one of nuclear weapon country!!!!
In Response

by: dave bowen from: arizona usa
November 25, 2013 3:56 PM
Frankly,I could not care less about what Israel thinks. She is Americas number one welfare client,one hand in our pocket for billions a year,while slapping us in the face at every opportunity with the other. Fairweather friend. I was on the USS Liberty. Israel never explained,never apologized

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs