News / Middle East

Panetta Cautions Israel Against Iran Military Strike

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta during a news conference at the Pentagon,  Nov. 10, 2011.
Defense Secretary Leon Panetta during a news conference at the Pentagon, Nov. 10, 2011.

U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta says he is cautioning Israel not to take military action against Iran, as the U.N. nuclear agency prepares to debate a resolution expressing "deep and increasing concern" about Iran's nuclear program.

Panetta said on the eve of his meeting Friday with his Israeli counterpart Ehud Barak, that a military strike could have severe economic consequences around the world. He said the U.S. will continue to focus on sanctions as a means to curb Iran's suspected nuclear weapons ambitions.

Also Friday, the International Atomic Energy Agency holds its first meeting since it alleged there is "credible" evidence Tehran is trying to build nuclear weapons.  During the session, the agency is expected to debate a new resolution from the permanent members of the U.N. Security Council and Germany which says the world powers are increasingly worried Iran is using its nuclear program to develop military weapons.

The United States and several European countries have been pushing the nuclear watchdog to come down hard on Iran for its nuclear program.

Iran rejected last week's IAEA report and has continually denied allegations it is pursuing nuclear weapons.

Russia and China have expressed skepticism about the IAEA report. Russian officials dismissed the findings as nothing new.  

Recent reports in the Israeli media said Israel's government has been considering a military strike on Iran's nuclear sites.  The Israeli defense chief warned during a U.S. television interview with PBS's Charlie Rose that Iran could spark a new, nuclear arms race if it gets a nuclear bomb.

Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has said Tehran will respond to any military strike by Israel or its main ally the United States with "strong slaps and iron fists."

Seeking to increase the pressure against Iran, a U.S. Senator Republican Mark Kirk Thursday introduced new legislation aimed at collapsing Iran's central bank.  The amendment would allow the U.S. to cut off any foreign financial institution for doing business with the bank, though it allowed for certain exceptions to try to ensure the oil market would not be disrupted, and to ensure food and medical aid could continue to the Iranian public.

The U.N. Security Council has passed four sets of sanctions on Iran for refusing to stop nuclear activities that have both civilian and military uses.

You May Like

Multimedia Social Media Documenting, Not Driving, Hong Kong Protests

Unlike in Arab Spring uprisings, pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong aren't relying on Twitter and Facebook to organize, but social media still plays a role More

Bambari Hospital a Lone Place of Help in Violence-Plagued CAR

Only establishment still functioning in CAR's second city is main hospital More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
The Legacy of Jimmy Carter: The Preacher from Plainsi
X
October 01, 2014 10:45 AM
It is common in the United States to see tourists flock to sites associated with America's presidents. Some are privately owned and others are run by the National Park Service or the National Archives -- but most have helped draw business and people into the towns and cities where they are located. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there is one particular presidential hometown that is unique in what it has to offer those who make the trip.
Video

Video The Legacy of Jimmy Carter: The Preacher from Plains

It is common in the United States to see tourists flock to sites associated with America's presidents. Some are privately owned and others are run by the National Park Service or the National Archives -- but most have helped draw business and people into the towns and cities where they are located. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there is one particular presidential hometown that is unique in what it has to offer those who make the trip.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests Draw New Supporters on National Holiday

On the 65th anniversary of the founding of Communist China, Hong Kong protesters are hoping to stage the largest pro-democracy demonstration since the 1989 Tiananmen protests. VOA's Brian Padden visited one of the protest sites mid-day, when the atmosphere was calm and where the supporters were enthusiastic about joining what they are calling the umbrella revolution.
Video

Video India's PM Continues First US Visit

India's prime minister is on his first visit to Washington, to strengthen political and economic ties between the world's oldest and the world biggest democracies. He came to the U.S. capital from New York, the first stop on his five-day visit to the country that denied him an entry visa in the past. From Washington, Zlatica Hoke reports Modi seemed most focused on attracting foreign investment and trade to increase job opportunities for his people.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid