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Netanyahu seeks anti-Iran alliance parallel to Biden administration

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu delivers a speech at the Knesset (Israeli Parliament) in Jerusalem on 22 December 2020. [YONATHAN SINDEL/POOL/AFP via Getty Images]
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu delivers a speech at the Knesset (Israeli Parliament) in Jerusalem on 22 December 2020. [YONATHAN SINDEL/POOL/AFP via Getty Images]

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been seeking to create an anti-Iran alliance with the UAE and Bahrain to run parallel to the Biden administration, Arabs48.com reported on Wednesday. It cited Israel Hayom, which claimed that Netanyahu wanted to use his visits to the UAE and Bahrain to "coordinate stances related to the Iranian issue in order to be parallel to the US administration."

On Wednesday evening, Israeli media announced that Netanyahu had postponed his planned visits to the Gulf States due to the new lockdown measures in Israel, including the closure of Ben Gurion Airport.

"In Israel, they are very worried by the Iranian provocation represented by the rising rate of uranium enrichment, as well as the messages that the Biden administration is planning to lift the sanctions imposed on Iran and return to the nuclear deal," said Israel Hayom.

Washington and Tehran: Who will make the first move?

Meanwhile, the head of the Israeli Mossad spy agency, Yossi Cohen, is expected to meet with US officials in the next two weeks. According to Wallah, Cohen is expected to communicate "sensitive intelligence information" to the Americans related to the repositioning of Iran in Syria and its plans to carry out terrorist attacks in the Middle East.

The news website reported Israeli officials expressing their concerns that Biden has reappointed most of former President Barack Obama's staff, arguing that they are political rather than intelligence experts. "As such," said Wallah, "Israel is afraid that these staffers will lead the president to retain his pragmatic line towards Iran and return to the original nuclear deal."

One of the Israeli officials said that many things have gone from bad to worse since 2015 when the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action was signed with Iran. "If they wanted to be the third Obama term, this would be a challenge," the official said. "If Biden wanted to correct what Obama did in his first term, he should listen to the correct people."

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