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US accuses Israel of inaccurate leaks on Iran nuclear talks

February 19, 2015 at 2:50 pm

The United States yesterday accused Israel of leaking a distorted image of the US negotiating position on Iran’s nuclear programme and criticised what has been described as the “continued practice of cherry-picking” and leaking information out of context.

White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters: “We see that there is a continued practice of cherry-picking specific pieces of information and using them out of context to distort the negotiating position of the United States. There’s no question about that.”

“There’s no question that some of the things that the Israelis have said in characterising our negotiating position have not been accurate,” he said.

Speaking to reporters yesterday, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki accused Israel of the “selective sharing of information” but declined to say what information had been “cherry-picked”.

She said: “I think it is safe to say not everything you are hearing from the Israeli government is an accurate reflection of the details of the talks.”

The negotiations between the United States, Russia, China, France, Germany, Britain and Iran reached a crucial stage after the countries agreed to reach a basic framework agreement by the end of March, and a final agreement by June 30.

Earnest did not discuss details of the US-Israeli consultations on the nuclear negotiations with Iran.

He said: “I think it is fair to say that the United States is mindful of the need to not negotiate in public and ensure that information that’s discussed in the negotiating table is not taken out of context and publicised in a way that distorts the negotiating position of the United States and our allies.”