Former U.S. secretary of state – and potential presidential candidate in 2016 - Hillary Clinton said Wednesday that she was skeptical Iran would follow through on a deal to curtail its nuclear program.
"President Obama has said that the odds of getting a comprehensive agreement are 50-50," Clinton said, during an address to the American Jewish Committee's global forum in Washington. "I personally am skeptical that the Iranians will follow through and deliver," The Hill cited her as saying.
Nevertheless, she described the ongoing negotiations between Iran and the P5+1 global powers as "a promising development" and said the United States and its allies "need to test it to see what can be achieved."
Clinton, who has not yet announced her intention to run in 2016, used her address to offer a sweeping defense of her record as secretary of state, highlighting her work to bring Iran into nuclear negotiations and touting her efforts to maintain a “rock solid” relationship with Israel.
“It was always, for me, an important part not just of my responsibility but my privilege to be a friend of Israel,” she said.
On the failed peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians, Clinton said that it was not hard to imagine what a final deal will look like but stressed it will require "mobilizing the political will" of all parties involved.
She reaffirmed the U.S.'s commitment to Israel, saying, “America’s commitment to Israel’s security will never waver. That is not a hard choice."
Referring to the meetings between Iran and the P5+1 countries in Vienna this week, Clinton maintained that Iran had not lived up to all of its commitments in the past. The next few months would be crucial, she said, and the U.S. needed to be willing to walk away from a bad deal.
"To get there we will have to be tough, clear eyed and ready to walk away and increase the pressure if need be," she said. "No deal is better than a bad deal. From my perspective, we cannot and should not accept any agreement that endangers Israel or our own national security. Now it is worth noting that even if an agreement is reached, Iran's support for terrorist and its aggressive behavior in the region remains a threat."
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