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US Defense Secretary arrives in Israel amid Iran talks

Newly approved the US Secretary of Defence Lloyd Austin arrives at the Pentagon in Washington D.C., United States on January 22, 2021 [Kasım İleri / Anadolu Agency]
Newly approved the US Secretary of Defence Lloyd Austin arrives at the Pentagon in Washington D.C., United States on January 22, 2021 [Kasım İleri / Anadolu Agency]

US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin arrived in Jerusalem today amid nuclear deal negotiations with Iran, The New Arab reported.

The two-day visit comes as President Joe Biden's administration starts talks to rejoin the nuclear deal with Iran that was scrapped by former US President Donald Trump; a move that was applauded by Israel, who have always opposed the 2015 nuclear deal.

Austin will meet Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Defence Minister Benny Gantz, and armed forces top dog Lieutenant General Aviv Kochavi.

Austin's visit follows talks launched in Austria's Vienna over bringing the US back into the 2015 nuclear deal.

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The talks aim to revive the 2015 nuclear deal in order to lift crippling sanctions on Iran imposed by the Trump administration, and at the same time ensure Tehran stop breeching its own commitments, of which several have been broken since Trump withdrew the US from the nuclear deal.

Israel has made clear its opposition to a revival of the nuclear deal to the US, with Netanyahu declaring Israel would 'not be bound' by its terms.

"An agreement with Iran that would pave the way to nuclear weapons – weapons that threaten our extinction – would not compel us in any way," Netanyahu said in a speech.

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Asia & AmericasIranIsraelMiddle EastNewsUS
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