Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday said the United States had forfeited any moral right to stop Israel taking action against Iran’s nuclear program because it had refused to be firm with Tehran itself.
In comments which appeared to bring the possibility of an Israeli attack on Iran closer, Netanyahu took the administration of President Barack Obama to task after Washington rebuffed his own call to set a red line for Tehran’s nuclear drive.
“The world tells Israel ‘wait, there’s still time’. And I say, ‘Wait for what? Wait until when?’” said Netanyahu, speaking in English.
“Those in the international community who refuse to put red lines before Iran don’t have a moral right to place a red light before Israel,” he added, addressing a news conference with Bulgaria’s prime minister.
Netanyahu has been pushing Obama to adopt a tougher line against Iran, arguing that setting a clear boundary for Iran’s uranium enrichment activities and imposing stronger economic sanctions could deter Tehran from developing nuclear weapons and mitigate the need for military action.
But on Monday U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the United States would not set a deadline in further talks with Iran, saying there was still time for diplomacy to work.