Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Jerusalem remains tight-lipped over deal between Iran, Western powers

(Haaretz).The national security adviser has instructed all government officials involved in the Iranian nuclear issue not to respond to media reports on a draft agreement between Iran and the West regarding uranium enrichment in Russia.

Uzi Arad, who heads the National Security Council, issued the directive to officials in the Foreign Ministry, the Atomic Energy Commission, the Defense Ministry and the Israel Defense Forces.

A senior political source in Jerusalem said the directive was issued because Israel wishes to ascertain the details of the draft agreement and to ensure media reports on the deal are accurate.

Israel would also like to verify whether the deal reflects the positions of the International Atomic Energy Agency, the United States and European countries.

Defense officials and intelligence experts are still trying to understand the basis for the agreement, which was presented by IAEA chief Mohammed ElBaradei.

A senior defense source said the entire story seems strange, and it remains unclear how this agreement came about.