TALKS on Iran’s nuclear energy programme stalled yesterday as the United States moved the goalposts, while Israel’s prime minister likened Iran to Islamic State (Isis).
International Atomic Energy Agency director General Yukiya Amano said meetings with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani had resulted in a “better understanding on some ways forward,” but that “more work will be needed.”
US negotiators have complicated the talks by insisting that Iran allow an investigation into alleged secret nuclear arms programmes.
Mr Rouhani said that the agency understood that the “pointless allegations” were “baseless.”
On Thursday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu claimed that Iran would become a nuclear-armed Isis if it was allowed to pursue nuclear energy generation.
The Jerusalem Post reported Mr Netanyahu as saying: “Obviously, no-one thinking with a clear mind would consider giving Islamic State nuclear weapons.
“But, in the negotiations taking place now with Iran, this extreme state that spreads terrorism around the world is being given the ability to develop a nuclear weapons arsenal with many nuclear bombs, together with the means to deliver them.”
Mr Netanyahu claimed the world was facing two major threats — from Isis and from Iran.
In a rerun of his presentation of a cartoon anarchist bomb at the UN in 2012, a crudely animated propaganda video making the same Isis-Iran comparison was posted on Mr Netanyahu’s social media pages.
The cartoon shows Isis militants in a military jeep running over victims wearing badges identifying them as US citizens, Christians, gays and Jews.
At the end, the video shows an evil-looking Iranian mullah standing by a atomic power station, clutching four nuclear missiles bearing the same badges, indicating their supposed targets.
Stop the War Coalition convenor Lindsey German said: “Netanyahu’s latest attack on Iran may be a cartoon, but it is no joke.
“He denounces all those opposed to him as terrorists. Yet it is Netanyahu who has bombed Palestine, Netanyahu who constantly ups the threat of war with Iran and Netanyahu who rules a country which is the only possessor of nuclear weapons in the Middle East.”