News / Middle East

    Iran, Syria Major Topics on Obama's First Day in Israel

    Iran, Syria Major Topics on Obama's First Day in Israeli
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    March 21, 2013 2:22 AM
    On the first day of President Barack Obama's visit to Israel, Iran's nuclear program and the civil war in Syria were major topics in talks with Israeli leaders, along with efforts to revive Israeli-Palestinian peace efforts. VOA senior White House correspondent Dan Robinson reports from Jerusalem.
    Iran, Syria Major Topics on Obama's First Day in Israel
    On the first day of President Barack Obama's visit to Israel, Iran's nuclear program and the civil war in Syria were major topics in talks with Israeli leaders, along with efforts to revive Israeli-Palestinian peace efforts.

    What Israel and the United States see as the threat to Israel, the region and the world from Iran's nuclear program came up in the first round of talks, those between Obama and Israeli President Shimon Peres.

    The issue carried over to President Obama's talks with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

    In a news conference, Obama said a diplomatic solution on Iran is preferable but, he said, he respects Israel's right to act on its own.

    "The United States will continue to consult closely with Israel on next steps and I will repeat, all options are on the table, and we will do what is necessary to prevent Iran from getting the world's worst weapons," Obama said.

    Netanyahu was asked about Obama's assurances on Iran.

    "We have different vulnerabilities obviously and different capabilities. We take that into account. But what we do maintain, and I think the president is the first to do so, is that that Israel has a right to independently defend against any threat including the Iranian threat," Netanyahu said.

    Talks also covered the civil war in Syria.

    Obama said the U.S. and international partners are investigating whether chemical weapons have been used in the conflict.

    "The broader point is that once we establish the facts, I have made clear that the use of chemical weapons is a game changer," Obama said.

    Obama said he is skeptical of Assad government claims that rebels have used chemical weapons.
     
    Obama's first day was not without lighter moments and informality.  The president called the prime minister by his nickname "Bibi".  Netanyahu called Obama by his first name.

    Earlier, at the residence of Israeli President Peres, President Obama planted a tree similar to one at the White House.  Israeli children waved American and Israeli flags, and sang to Obama.

    On Thursday, President Obama meets Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in the occupied West Bank.

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    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: kanaikaalirumporai
    March 21, 2013 7:56 AM
    The time has already run out!, and since allthese things like NPT and such are dishonest and biased, there may not be very much interest among world community to adhere to treaties like that, for any emerging state ot nation would see this as a unjustified constrain on them. Beides, the recent nuclear powers like India(which was to be included in another club with US suport) and Pakistan were not punished for developing the technology in secrecy, but were comended by acepting them into the exixting nuclear culb after a brief symbolic sanctions. Above all, Israel has not been forced into givingup the thing, but allowed to keep it in secret. So, the norm here is develop it in secrecy daring everything and when you are confident, tell the world about it and there would be brief messures, but will eventually be accepted. So, why would one hesitate?

    by: Don King from: USA
    March 21, 2013 2:37 AM
    a major failure on the part of the US to see the Muslim Brotherhood for what it is - a deeply undemocratic movement concerned above all else with enhancing and perpetuating its own Islamic theocratic fascistic power - is that because of subversives inside the US - like Vali Nasr - a Muslim Brotherhood facilitator who happen to be the Dean of the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies in Washington, D.C...!!! would you believe that??? the revolting reprobate Nasr is in our midst!!!

    by: Mustafa from: Pakistan
    March 21, 2013 2:05 AM
    Why USA is considering IRAN is the biggest thread in this world and why ISRAEL is a peace loving country. History is full of records who is spreading terrorism in this world. Who were and are Main sponsors of Al Qaida and Taliban to destroy peace in this world. Who are the main SPONSORS in current conflict in Syria and Pakistan. USA department please tell the true story to this world. We can make fool in this world but in front of GOD on day of judgement no body can fool GOD.

    by: Anonymous
    March 21, 2013 1:01 AM
    what the hell is it.,..,

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