Eli Ridder | The Post
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu blasted Iran on Sunday at the Munich Security Conference, describing Tehran as the top threat to international stability while brandishing what he identified as a piece of an Iranian drone shot down by Tel Aviv last week.
In a speech dismissed by Iranian foreign minister Mohammed Javad Zarif as “cartoonish” and not worthy of a response, Mr. Netanyahu said that Israel would “not allow Iran’s regime to put a noose of terror around our neck.”
Netanyahu criticized the Iran nuclear deal that was spearheaded by the United States under former President Barack Obama, comparing it to 1938’s Munich Agreement, identified as a failed diplomatic effort to subdue Nazi Germany.
The prime minister held up a remnant of a drone and addressed Mr. Zarif, saying “do you recognize this? You should, it’s yours.”
“You can take back a message to the tyrants of Tehran: Do not test Israel’s resolve.”
Tel Aviv accuses Iran of attacking Israel, and frequently strikes Iranian and allied Hezbollah positions within neighbouring Syria.
The BBC reported that Zarif responded later by denying Israel’s accusations Iran was attempting to dominate the Middle East, insisting that Tehran was “not devouring the entire region”, saying it wasn’t in his country’s “best interest or even possible. So we need to start talking instead.”
Zarif, who’s country does not recognize Israel, deflected questions over Iran recognizing the country, instead accusing Tel Aviv of “using aggression as a policy against its neighbours”, including Palestine.
In an exclusive interview with NBC News at the conference, Zarif commented on Netanyahu’s threat of direct military action, saying “if they try to exercise that threat, they will see the response.”
U.S. President Donald Trump, seen as an ally of Netanyahu, has also made clear his stance on the Obama-era Iran nuclear deal made in 2015, previously calling it the “worst deal” the U.S. has made.
The deal forces Iran not to produce nuclear weaponry, and is monitored by an independent commission that has not reported any major violations since the agreement was signed.
The Israeli premier is embroiled in alleged charges of corruption back in his one country.
Image of Benjamin Netanyahu at the conference from Quartz.