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POLITICS: PennAve

Obama tries to reassure Netanyahu about Iran deal

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Politics,White House,Barack Obama,Iran,Israel,PennAve,Susan Crabtree,Benjamin Netanyahu,Nuclear Weapons,Foreign Policy

President Obama phoned Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday to discuss the preliminary deal struck between the U.S., its allies and Iran to start freezing the development of Iran's nuclear program.

Shortly after the deal was struck Saturday, Netanyahu denounced it as a “historic mistake” that does little, if anything, to reverse Iran's nuclear ambitions and instead makes the world a more dangerous place.

Obama on Sunday tried to reassure Netanyahu that the interim deal was just the first step and pledged that the U.S. and the five world powers that negotiated the agreement with Iran would use the months ahead to pursue a “lasting, peaceful and comprehensive solution to resolve the international community's concerns regarding Iran's nuclear program,” according to a White House readout of the phone call.

“Consistent with our commitment to consult closely with our Israeli friends, the president told the prime minister that he wants the United States and Israel to begin consultations immediately regarding our efforts to negotiate a comprehensive solution,” the White House said.

On Sunday Israeli offices said they wanted to spend the next months pressing the U.S. and its negotiating partners to reach a deal with Iran that doesn't just curb Tehran's nuclear development but dismantles the program.

Obama pledged that the U.S. would “remain firm in our commitment to Israel, which has good reason to be skeptical about Iran's intentions” and said he would stay in close contact with Netanyahu on the issue as the U.S. and its allies negotiate a long-term solution.

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