U.S. has “other options” Biden tells Israeli Prime Minister at bilateral meeting if diplomacy with Iran fails


President Joe Biden told Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett at the White House on Friday that the United States would have “another option” if its diplomatic use with Iran failed to ensure that it would never develop nuclear weapons. Said there was.

A deadly explosion at Kabul Airport in Afghanistan killed at least 92 people, 13 of whom were killed, after which the bilateral meeting between the two leaders was delayed by one day. Both Biden and Bennett expressed their condolences for the loss of Americans in Kabul.

The two leaders used the meeting to reaffirm relations between the United States and Israel and discuss how to tackle the nuclear threat from Iran.

Biden told reporters in the Oval Office that he and Naphtali would talk about “a commitment to ensure that Iran does not develop nuclear weapons.”

“We put diplomacy first and see where it takes us, but if diplomacy fails, we are ready to look at other options.” Biden said without specifying what the options were.

“Iran is the world’s number one exporter of terrorism, instability and human rights abuses. When we are sitting here, Iranians are spinning centrifuges at Fordow’s factory. We have them I have to stop. Bennett told reporters.

He added that Israel has developed a “comprehensive strategy” that includes two goals.

“The first goal is to stop Iran’s invasion of the region and start putting them back in the box, and the second is to prevent Iran from exploding its nuclear weapons,” he said. ..

NS White House Read Participants in the meeting said the two leaders “considered procedures to prevent and contain Iran’s dangerous regional actions.” Biden and Naphtali also reaffirmed their commitment to “address all aspects of Israel’s security against Iran and other threats.”

“I was happy to hear your clear statement that Iran can never acquire nuclear weapons,” Bennett told Biden. “You emphasized trying diplomatic routes, but if that doesn’t work, there are other options,” he added without pointing out the possibility.

Alluding to the threat of Israeli military action and the billions of dollars of US military aid that Israel receives, Bennett said, “It is our responsibility to protect our destiny, but we give us what you give us. Thank you for the tools you gave me. “

According to the White House, Biden stated that he “supported the iron wall for security for Israel’s self-defense,” and “emphasized his administration’s full support for the replacement of Israel’s Iron Dome system.”

Conflict between Israel and Palestine

The two leaders briefly touched on the conflict between Israel and Palestine. According to the White House reading, Biden argued that “the negotiated two-state solution is the only viable way to achieve a lasting solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”

Biden also “emphasized the importance of measures to improve the lives of Palestinians and support their greater economic opportunities.”

Bennett did not mention Palestinians in his remarks.

Before the meeting, Bennett said New York Times On August 24, his government said, “Neither will be annexed.” [territory in the West Bank] It also does not form a Palestinian state. “

Separately, the two leaders acknowledged that Israel’s relations with Egypt and Jordan were “still important to regional stability” and that Israel’s relations with neighboring countries such as Bahrain, Morocco, Sudan and the United Arab Emirates Discussed how to deepen the relationship.

Biden also works to include Israel in a Visa Waiver Program that allows Israeli citizens to travel to the United States within 90 days without obtaining a visa if certain requirements are met. Said.

Reuters contributed to this report.

Mimi Nguyen Lee

Mimi Nguyen Ly is an Australian-based reporter. She covers world news with a focus on US news. Contact her at [email protected].