Clinton rejects Netanyahu's call for 'red lines' over Iran nuclear program
Secretary of state says that while Washington shares Jerusalem's concern over Islamic Republic's nuclear program, the Obama administration still believes 'negotiations are by far the best approach.'
As talks between officials in Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office and the White House continue over how to contain the Iranian nuclear program, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Sunday said the U.S. administration is not prepared to commit to drawing "red lines" as Netanyahu has insisted.
Netanyahu recently called for world powers to set a "clear red line" that would show they were determined to stop Tehran's nuclear drive has suggested a growing impatience with the United States.
“We’re not setting deadlines," Clinton said in an interview with Bloomberg Radio.
Netanyahu on Sunday said that Israel and the U.S. are discussing applying further pressure on Iran, and called for drawing red lines that if crossed would prompt a military strike against the Islamic Republic's nuclear facilities. Netanyahu stressed that these lines are the only way a war can be avoided.
"I don't think that they [Iran] see a clear red line, and I think the sooner we establish one, the greater the chances that there won't be a need for other types of action," Netanyahu said, appearing to refer to military steps.
"If Iran saw that, there's a chance, I won't say it's guaranteed, but there's a chance they might pause before they cross that line."
Clinton rejected Netanyahu's stance, saying that negotiations are “by far the best approach” to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons.
“We’re watching very carefully about what they do, because it’s always been more about their actions than their words,” she said on the sidelines of an Asia-Pacific forum in Vladivostok, Russia.
The Secretary of State said that Israel and the U.S. share the goal of preventing Iran from developing a nuclear weapon, yet there are disagreements over the timetable of negotiations with the Islamic Republic.
The Israelis are "more anxious about a quick response because they feel that they’re right in the bulls eye, so to speak,” Clinton said. “But we’re convinced that we have more time to focus on these sanctions, to do everything we can to bring Iran to a good-faith negotiation.”