03/10/13 11:15 CET
| updated xx mn ago
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The US has sought to reassure Israel that any thawing of American relations with Iran must be based on proof that Tehran is taking concrete steps to give up its alleged nuclear weapons programme.
Earlier this week the Israeli prime minister reminded President Obama that he believed Iran wanted to destroy Israel.
On a trip to Japan the US Secretary of State responded.
“I assure Prime Minister Netanyahu and the people of Israel that nothing that we do is going to be based on trust, it’s going to be based on a series of steps that guarantee to all of us that we have certainty about what is happening,” said John Kerry.
“The world will be better off, the Middle East will be better off, Iran will be better off, Israel will be better off, if there is a way to achieve a verified certainty to the elimination of a nuclear programme for weapons purposes in Iran – and the president (Obama) has made it clear that Iran can have a peaceful nuclear programme,” he continued.
Iran’s parliament has strongly endorsed President Rohani’s bid at the UN to dispel mistrust, despite the reservations of some hardliners. 230 out of 290 deputies signed a declaration expressing their support.
Talks between Iran and six world powers over its nuclear programme are due to resume in mid-October.
A senior EU diplomat has said Western governments are considering changing stance, to allow Iran to continue some uranium enrichment.
In an interview with Reuters, Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linas Linkevicius said: “I believe part of the game is that if the Iranians prove that whatever they are doing is peaceful, it will, as I understand, be possible for them to conduct it.”
Lithuania holds the rotating presidency of the European Union until the end of this year, giving Linkevicius a closer insight into many internal policy debates.
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