US tries to calm Israel’s concerns by assuring that Iran deal is not imminent

Senior U.S. officials have assured the Israeli portal Walla News that the new nuclear deal with Iran is not expected to happen immediately because Joe Biden’s Administration will not accept new concessions in the framework of the negotiations.

The White House has sent messages of reassurance to Israel about the status of negotiations on the possible nuclear pact, however, Israeli officials contacted by the news portal claim there is concern. “We are not reassured,” says one official. “On the contrary, we are very worried,” he added.

Jerusalem’s concern has increased dramatically since direct negotiations between the European Union and Iran resumed. This situation has led to “unusual friction” with Washington, Walla assures.

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Officials have stressed, however, that Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid has no intention of waging a public campaign against Biden. “Our policy is not to provoke a public dispute with the United States,” one official has indicated. “We will not ruin relations with the Biden administration as (Benjamin) Netanyahu did with (Barack) Obama,” they have assured.

These comments have been made after a senior US official confirmed to ‘The Times of Israel’ newspaper that Tehran has abandoned its demanded “red line” that entailed a conflict in the nuclear deal negotiations.

Iran would not have demanded — at this point in the negotiations — that the U.S. remove the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) from the Foreign Terrorist Organizations list held by Biden’s State Department. It would also have dropped requests on delisting of companies linked to the IRGC.

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According to the official, Tehran “discards” these demands from “the current version of the text.” “So, if we are closer to an agreement, that’s why,” he assured.

On Monday, the Iranian government forwarded its response to Borrell’s proposal, showing optimism about the chances of the deal materializing. Iranian Foreign Minister Hosein Amirabdolahian had explained that he saw a rapprochement “in the coming days” as feasible “if the United States demonstrates a realistic approach and flexibility”.

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