Asharq Al-awsat English Middle-east and International News and Opinion from Asharq Al-awsat Newspaper

Israeli PM Says he Hopes US Will Heed Calls against Delisting IRGC

Israeli PM Says he Hopes US Will Heed Calls against Delisting IRGC

Sunday, 27 March, 2022 - 14:30
Israel's Prime Minister Naftali Bennett speaks during the weekly cabinet meeting at the Prime Minister's Office in Jerusalem, September 5, 2021. Sebastian Scheiner/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett urged the United States on Sunday to heed calls against any removal of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps from the US terrorism blacklist.

"We're concerned about the intention to delist the IRGC," Bennett told visiting US Secretary of State Antony Blinken.

"I hope the United States will hear the concerned voices from the region, Israel's and others, on this very important issue."

“When it comes to the most important element, we see eye-to-eye,” Blinken told reporters at a news conference with Israel's foreign minister earlier. “We are both committed, both determined that Iran will never acquire a nuclear weapon.”

The Biden administration has been working to renew the 2015 nuclear deal, which placed curbs on Iran's nuclear program in exchange for billions of dollars in sanctions relief. With support from Israel, the Trump administration withdrew from the deal in 2018, causing it to unravel.

Blinken said the US believes that restoring the nuclear deal “is the best way to put Iran's program back in the box it was in.” He added: “Our commitment to the core principle of Iran never acquiring a nuclear weapon is unwavering.”

He also vowed to cooperate with Israel to counter Iran's “aggressive behavior” across the region.

It remains unclear if or when the nuclear deal will be renewed, but there are indications it could be soon despite several last-minute snags, one of which involves Iran's demand for the US to lift its designation of the IRGC as a “foreign terrorist organization.”

Editor Picks