Analysts cast doubt on Israeli claim that Iran has been lying about nuclear proliferation

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By Euronews
Analysts cast doubt on Israeli claim that Iran has been lying about nuclear proliferation

As the deadline looms for US President Trump to either continue the Iran nuclear deal or end it, Israel's prime minister has presented evidence he says proves Iran is not being compliant.

Netanyahu made a presentation at Israel's defence ministry on Monday of what he said was evidence of a secret Iranian nuclear weapons programme that could encourage the United States to pull out this month of a 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and world powers.

Netanyahu informed Trump about evidence of a past secret Iranian nuclear arms programme in March, a senior Israeli official said, a move apparently aimed at killing an international deal with Tehran that both leaders oppose.

But many analysts believe Israel is deliberately painting a bad picture of Iran.

Pierre Conesa, a former senior French defence ministry official, said Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu "is not a person I would trust most in his international positions."

"I recall that when he was a member of the Knesset he was already accusing Iran of preparing the bomb. The first charge dates back to 1988 and at the time he announced that Iran would have the bomb within six months."

Conesa also commented on French President Emmanuel Macron's visit to the US last week for talks with President Trump.

"I was very surprised by the press conference given by President Macron and Donald Trump saying that Iran is the destabilizing power in the Middle East when we had 240 dead and 900 injured in the streets of Paris by Salafists who have nothing to do with Iran but have a lot to do with Saudi Arabia."

Salafism is a strict form of Sunni Islam found in Gulf states whereas Iran's Muslims are mostly Shi'ites. So-called Islamic state is also a Sunni and not a Shi'ite group.