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Friday 19.01.2018 | Name days: Alnis, Andulis

Romney: US has a «solemn duty» to prevent Iranian threat to Israel

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Mitt Romney

Presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney said that the United States has a «solemn duty and a moral imperative» to do whatever necessary to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons that could threaten the existence of Israel, a vital American ally.

Romney focused on the specter of a nuclear-capable Iran and pledged the U.S. would never forget past horrors or turn its back on Israel, NBC News reported.

Romney reiterated his belief that Iran is a vexing national concern to both Israel and the U.S. – suggesting, as a Romney aide did earlier today that the U.S. would not block a unilateral Israeli strike against Iran’s nuclear program if diplomatic options failed.

«We should employ any and all measures to dissuade the Iranian regime from its nuclear course, and it is our fervent hope that diplomatic and economic measures will do so,» Romney said. «In the final analysis, of course, no option should be excluded. We recognize Israel’s right to defend itself and that it is right for America to stand with you,» he added.

During his visit the former Massachusetts governor met with top Israeli political leaders, Daniel Shapiro, the U.S. Ambassador to Israel appointed by Obama and Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad. He visited one of Judaism’s most holy sites, the Western Wall, and will dine, with wife Ann and son Josh, with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his family.

Political analysts have said that for Romney to win over Israelis (and perhaps American Jews and other supporters of Israel in the U.S.), he would need to show more warmth than President Barack Obama in his personal dealings here. Romney endeavored to do just that all day, calling Netanyahu, «my friend Benjamin Netanyahu.»

As BNN already reported, Israel’s defence minister Ehud Barak has said that, in case sanctions fail, Israel may take pre-emptive action against Iran to make it drop its nuclear ambitions. Barak said his country may have to take «tough and crucial decisions» about its security.

Jerusalem officially maintains that «it is keeping all options open on the table» on Iran. So far, Israel’s ministers had avoided issuing direct threats preferring the international diplomatic track.

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