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Netanyahu still concerned about nuclear talks with Iran

Israel's prime minister has expressed his concerns over the course of nuclear negotiations between Iran and the major countries which agreed the initial deal with Tehran late last year. Benjamin Netanyahu made his comments at his weekly cabinet meeting on the eve of German Chancellor Angela Merkel's visit to Israel.

"Iran, in fact, is getting everything and giving virtually nothing," he said. "I look with concern at the fact that Iran believes that it will realise its plan to become a threshold nuclear state." The final agreement between Iran and the other major powers shouldn't confirm this situation, he insisted. Netanyahu intends to discuss the Iranian nuclear file and the negotiations with the Palestinians with Chancellor Merkel. Germany is a member of the group of six major powers (P5+1) which are negotiating with Tehran.

Meanwhile, Israeli Intelligence Minister Yuval Steinitz met an assistant of the US Secretary of State on Sunday. Wendy Sherman briefed him about the stages of the negotiations with Iran, claimed Israel's Army Radio.

On the eve of Merkel's visit to Israel, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier has published an article in Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper under the title "You (Israelis) are not alone". According to Steinmeier, the Iranian nuclear programme poses a threat on the horizon. "The United States, Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany are debating in Vienna the future of Iran's nuclear programme," he wrote. "Our objective is clear: Iran must be prevented from acquiring nuclear arms."

On November 24 ,Iran signed an agreement with the P5+1 countries under the supervision of the International Atomic Energy Agency, whereby it agreed to freeze some of its nuclear activities, particularly uranium enrichment, by twenty per cent in return for the partial lifting of sanctions. This agreement came into force on January 20.

Iran's nuclear negotiator, Abbas Araghchi, declared on Sunday that Iranian and Western technical experts from the P5+1 will begin their talks by the beginning of March in Vienna on the fringe of a meeting of the International Atomic Energy Agency.

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