Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Shimon Peres argued forcefully in talks with visiting Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi that Iran must not be allowed the capability of developing atomic weapons.
“We believe that for the peace of the world, for the peace of the coming years and decades, Iran must be denied the capability . . . to develop nuclear weapons,” Netanyahu said before meeting with the visiting Chinese diplomat Wednesday, the Jerusalem Post reported
The Israeli leader repeated his insistence that Iran take steps which include ending uranium enrichment and dismantling centrifuges.
“I think this is something that the international community in its entirety must stand firm on,” he added.
Wang did not mention Iran in his comments. The Chinese foreign minister, who is making his first visit to Israel, will likely hear similar concerns when he visits Saudi Arabia, his last stop on a trip to the region that will also take him to Algeria and Morocco.
Wang is also the first Chinese foreign minister to visit Israel since 2009.
Together with the United States, Russia, Britain, France and Germany, China is one of the so-called P5+1 nations negotiating with Tehran over its nuclear program.
In meetings with Wang on Thursday, Peres said Israel prefers a diplomatic solution to the Iran nuclear issue.
He said diplomatic pressure must continue in order to make sure that Iran sanctions succeed, and urged China to work with the international community to deny Iran a nuclear weapons capability, the Post reported Thursday
Peres emphasized that Israel does not regard the Iranian people as its enemy.
“Our enemies are the policies and ideology driving the current Iranian regime,” he said.
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