Emmanuel Macron receives Benjamin Netanyahu, Iran and Israeli-Palestinian violence on the menu

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French President Emmanuel Macron received the award-winning Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday evening at the Élysée Palace. Iran and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict were at the center of the discussions.

Growing tensions around Iran and Israeli-Palestinian violence are at the heart of a meeting between French President Emmanuel Macron and the Prime Minister named Benjamin Netanyahu, who arrived in Paris on Thursday evening February 2.

The French president welcomed the Prime Minister to the Élysée Palace where a dinner was organized, noted AFP journalists. Emmanuel Macron denounced “the headlong rush” of Iran in its nuclear program, and warned Tehran that a pursuit on this trajectory was not without “consequences”. “The President of the Republic reiterated the necessary firmness in the face of Iran’s headlong rush, which if it continued would inevitably have consequences, and of this country’s lack of transparency towards the International Atomic Energy Agency “, said the French presidency in a press release.

Iran has started enriching uranium up to 60%, well above the 3.67% threshold set by the 2015 agreement on its nuclear program and approaching the 90% needed to produce an atomic bomb. Tehran also threatens to take “reciprocal” measures if the European Union decides to place the Revolutionary Guards, the ideological army of the Islamic Republic, on its blacklist, as the European Parliament wishes.

Tehran is also threatening to withdraw from the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) and to expel IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency) inspectors from its nuclear sites.

Emmanuel Macron and Benjamin Netanyahu also “expressed their strong concern over Iran’s destabilizing activities throughout the region”, added the Elysee. The Pentagon announced on Wednesday a large seizure of Iranian weapons destined for Yemen, made in January by unidentified “proven allies” believed to be French special forces soldiers, according to the Wall Street Journal. “The president recalled that Iranian support for Russian aggression in Ukraine exposed Iran to sanctions and growing isolation,” Paris also stressed.

kyiv and its allies have accused Russia of using Iranian-made drones to carry out attacks on Ukraine, causing significant damage to civilian and energy infrastructure. In response, the West sanctioned several Iranian companies and generals, including General Bagheri.

Israeli-Palestinian violence was also to be on the menu of discussions between the two men. For several days, they have claimed dozens of victims. Ten people, combatants and civilians, died on January 26 in a raid provoked into the Jenin refugee camp, the deadliest in years in the West Bank. Seven civilians died the next day in a Palestinian attack in East Jerusalem, occupied and annexed by Israel. And on Saturday a Palestinian injured two Israelis, a father and his son, also in East Jerusalem, before being injured and arrested. In the West Bank, fired guards killed a Palestinian on Sunday and Israeli forces killed a Palestinian on Monday.

The French president told the dismissed Prime Minister on Thursday of his “concern” about the current situation, the Elysee Palace reported. He also joined Benjamin Netanyahu in France’s “full and complete solidarity” with Israel in its fight against terrorism, especially after the “despicable attack” that left seven dead near a synagogue last Friday. The head of state stressed the importance of avoiding any measure that could encourage an escalation of violence between Israelis and Palestinians, added the Elysee in a press release.

In addition to this diplomatic component, Benjamin Netanyahu “will meet leading businessmen in France in the financial field and hold a meeting with leaders of the Jewish community”, according to the embassy. We have to leave France on Saturday evening.

With AFP


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