US ‘mini-deal’ with Iran is inevitable, but Israel can ‘live with it’: Netanyahu

“Our stance is clear: No agreement with Iran will oblige Israel,” Netanyahu said. “Israel will continue to do everything to defend itself.”

By Lauren Marcus, World Israel News

A “mini-deal” between the U.S. and Iran aimed at curbing Tehran’s nuclear program in exchange for some sanctions relief will come to fruition in the near future, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told senior government officials.

“What’s on the agenda at the moment between Washington and Tehran is not a nuclear deal, it’s a mini-deal,” Netanyahu by Walla News as saying, speaking in a closed-door meeting to the Knesset Foreign Affairs Committee on Tuesday. “We will be able to handle it.”

Netanyahu reportedly stressed that the potential deal is a “mini-agreement, not an agreement,” following widespread reports that Tehran and Washington were engaged in talks, via an Omani negotiator.

Officials who were present at the meeting said Netanyahu framed the deal as something Israel “can live with” and that “this isn’t the deal we knew,” referring to the 2015 nuclear agreement which Israel had vehemently opposed at the time.

The premier also emphasized that Israel would not view the deal as restricting Israel’s freedom of action for fighting Iranian-funded terror and proxies in the region.

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“Our stance is clear: No agreement with Iran will oblige Israel,” he said. “Israel will continue to do everything to defend itself.”

According to the Walla report, Iran will not enrich uranium above 60 percent purity – notably, reports earlier this year indicated that the Islamic Republic has already surpassed this limit – and the U.S. will unfreeze large amounts of seized Iranian funds and assets abroad.

The two countries will also engage in a prisoner exchange.

On Tuesday, U.S. State Department Spokesman Matthew Miller said that reports of an upcoming interim deal with Iran were “completely false.” He stressed that “the vast majority of those reports have been wrong or completely misleading,” but did not deny that Oman was acting as a negotiator between the U.S. and Israel.

Washington “has always had the ability to deliver messages to Iran when it’s in the interest of the U.S. to do so,” Miller said.