Trump and Netanyahu talk about ‘problems posed by Iran’

With less than two weeks to decide whether to withdraw from Iran nuclear deal, US President Donald Trump talked with the Israeli Prime Minister about Iran’s “destabilizing activities.”
Trump and Netanyahu in Israel Photo Credit: Kobi Gideon/GPO

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and US President Donald Trump discussed the dangers posed by Iran during a phone call this Sunday.

“The two leaders discussed the continuing threats and challenges facing the Middle East region, especially the problems posed by the Iranian regime’s destabilizing activities,” according to a White House readout of the conversation.

As part of the Iran nuclear agreement, formerly known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, signed under Obama’s administration in 2015, Iran will reduce its uranium stockpile in return for international sanctions being lifted.

May 12 is the date set by Trump by which the US will decide whether to continue with the agreement in its current form. Trump previously expressed his displeasure with the nuclear agreement and called it “the worst deal” the US has ever made.

With only two weeks until the deadline, EU leaders such as German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron continue to support the nuclear deal, but it seems increasingly clear that unless significant changes are made, Trump will walk away from it.

"The President has been clear -- absent a substantial fix, absent overcoming the shortcomings, the flaws of the deal -- he is unlikely to stay in that deal past this May," said US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo during a press conference at the NATO headquarters last week.

Pompeo, on his first diplomatic trip, met with Netanyahu this Sunday and reiterated Trump’s displeasure with the Iran nuclear deal and US support for Israel. “We remain deeply concerned about Iran's dangerous escalation of threats to Israel and the region, and Iran's ambition to dominate the Middle East remains,” Pompeo said. “The United States is with Israel in this fight, and we strongly support Israel's sovereign right to defend itself.”



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