News / Middle East

UN Report Spurs Israeli Call for Tougher Sanctions Against Iran

An Israeli soldier role playing as a mock victim lies on the ground during a drill simulating a missile attack in Holon near Tel Aviv November 3, 2011.
An Israeli soldier role playing as a mock victim lies on the ground during a drill simulating a missile attack in Holon near Tel Aviv November 3, 2011.
Scott Bobb

Israeli leaders are urging the international community to stop Iran's pursuit of nuclear weapons after a U.N. agency said Tehran's nuclear program was not just for peaceful forces. There is debate in Israel about a possible military attack against Iran, but many opinion leaders say that should be a last resort.

The Israeli reaction came one day after a report by the International Atomic Energy Agency [IAEA] that said there is credible information that Iran was working to develop nuclear weapons.

Opposition leader Tzipi Livni said the IAEA report makes clear where Iran is heading.

"Iran threatens not only the interests of the free world, but the values of the free world. And this is something that needs to be defended. And we expect the international community, the free world, to stop Iran and prevent Iran from having a nuclear weapon," said Livni.

Iran postures, Israel prepares

Iran says its nuclear program is for civilian purposes only and that the U.N. report was based on lies.

A woman walks past anti-Israel posters depicting Israel's President Shimon Peres, Defense Minister Ehud Barak and a caricature of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (L-R) as she visits a war exhibition held by Iran's revolutionary guard, at Baharestan squa
A woman walks past anti-Israel posters depicting Israel's President Shimon Peres, Defense Minister Ehud Barak and a caricature of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (L-R) as she visits a war exhibition held by Iran's revolutionary guard, at Baharestan squa

Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak told Israel radio Tuesday that tougher sanctions should be imposed. He said it appears the international community is at "the last opportunity to impose drastic, internationally coordinated sanctions that would force Iran to stop" its nuclear weapons program.

Barak indicated that military attacks on Iranian nuclear installations, however, should be the last option.

In the days before the U.N. report was published, there was a flurry of media speculation that Israel's government was considering a military strike on Iranian nuclear facilities. Senior Iranian military officials warn that any attack against Iran will bring a severe response.

But Israeli President Shimon Peres said that such an attack was becoming more and more likely.

Focus on military option

Last week, the Israel military test-fired a ballistic missile. Israeli rescue and medical workers also held a drill near Tel Aviv to respond to a simulated foreign missile attack.

Media reports in Israel and Western countries said Netanyahu and Defense Minister Barak were trying to convince a divided Cabinet of the need for a military strike against Iran. There reportedly was resistance, though, from many ministers and senior military officials.

Israeli analyst Yossi Melman said the benefits from any Israeli attack against Iran would not justify the repercussions, which could include Iranian missile attacks on Israel and possibly a regional conflict. But he said tougher economic sanctions are not likely to work.

"I believe that it's not going to change the reality. Iran would continue with its efforts to have nuclear weapons. The sanctions would not be tough enough, and diplomatic measures are going to be exhausted. And we are, once again, in the same place, arguing about the military option," said Melman.

Barak said a military attack on Iranian nuclear facilities remains an option, though the least desirable one. And he said that while Israel prefers an international response, the country is, in his words, responsible for its own safety.

IRAN NUCLEAR TIMELINE

You May Like

At Khmer Rouge Court, Long-Awaited Verdict Approaches

First phase of trial, which is coming to an end, has focused on forced exodus of Phnom Penh in 1975 - and now many are hopeful justice will be served More

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities More

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

Downing of Malaysian airliner, allegations of cross-border shelling move information war in war-torn country to a new level 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.
Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
July 31, 2014 8:13 PM
The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict in Gaza, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities. Probably the most important destination is the local bakery. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Gaza City.
Video

Video US-Funded Program Offers Honduran Children Alternative to Illegal Immigration

President Obama and Central American leaders recently agreed to come up with a plan to address poverty and crime in the region that is fueling the surge of young migrants trying to illegally enter the United States. VOA’s Brian Padden looks at one such program in Honduras - funded in part by the United States - which gives street kids not only food and safety but a chance for a better life without, crossing the border.
Video

Video 'Fab Lab' Igniting Revolution in Kenya

The University of Nairobi’s Science and Technology Park is banking on 3-D prototyping to spark a manufacturing revolution in the country. Lenny Ruvaga has more for from Nairobi's so-called “FabLab” for VOA.
Video

Video Gazans in Shelled School Sought Shelter

Israel's air and ground assault against Hamas-led fighters in Gaza has forced many Palestinians to flee their homes, seeking safety. But safe places are hard to find, as VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jabaliya.
Video

Video Rapid Spread of Ebola in West Africa Prompts Global Alert

Across West Africa, health officials are struggling to keep up with what the World Health Organization describes as the worst ebola outbreak on record. The virus has killed hundreds of people this year. U.S. President Barack Obama and other world leaders are watching the developments closely as they weigh what actions, if any, are needed to help contain the disease.
Video

Video Michelle Obama: Young Africans Need to Embrace Women's Rights

U.S. first lady Michelle Obama urged some of Africa's best and brightest to advocate for women's rights in their home countries. As VOA's Pam Dockins explains, Obama spoke to some 500 participants of the Young African Leaders Initiative, a six-week U.S.-based training and development program.
Video

Video Immigrant Influx on Texas Border Heats Up Political Debate

Immigrants from Central America continue to cross the U.S.-Mexico border in south Texas, seeking asylum in the United States, as officials grapple with ways to deal with the problem and provide shelter for thousands of minors among the illegal border crossers. As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston, the issue is complicated by internal U.S. politics and U.S. relations with the troubled nations that immigrants are fleeing.
Video

Video Study: Latino Students Most Segregated in California

Even though legal school segregation ended in the United States 60 years ago, one study finds segregation still occurs in the U.S. based on income and race. The University of California Los Angeles Civil Rights Project finds that students in California are more segregated by race than ever before, especially Latinos. Elizabeth Lee reports for VOA from Los Angeles.

AppleAndroid