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Israel: minister criticises EU for trying to revive Iran nuclear talks

JERUSALEM - FEBRUARY 10: (----EDITORIAL USE ONLY – MANDATORY CREDIT - "ISRAELI FOREIGN MINISTRY / HANDOUT" - NO MARKETING NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS----) Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid and German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock hold a joint press conference after their meeting in Jerusalem on February 10, 2022. ( Israeli Foreign Ministry - Anadolu Agency )
Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid in Jerusalem on February 10, 2022. [Israeli Foreign Ministry/Anadolu Agency]

Israel's Foreign Minister Yair Lapid has criticised the EU for trying to revive the Iran nuclear talks, Israeli media reported on Sunday. He accused the bloc of ignoring threats against Israeli citizens.

Politico reported Lapid as telling EU Foreign Policy Chief Josep Borrell that reviving the talks "is a strategic mistake that sends the wrong message to Iran," following the latter's surprise visit to Tehran. On Saturday, Borrell said that negotiations over Iran's nuclear programme would resume within days.

Prior to going to the Iranian capital, Borrell apparently sent a message to Lapid that his visit would be an "attempt to bring Iran back to the nuclear agreement negotiations, and to remove the last obstacles."

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Lapid slammed the EU and Borrell over the alleged "lack of care for the lives of Israeli citizens," a reference to the alleged Iranian threats against Israelis in Turkiye. Borrell claimed that he raised the issue of Iranian threats during his meeting with officials in Tehran.

The Politico report said that Lapid's criticism was generally viewed by Borrell's office as part of an ongoing Israeli effort to sabotage the negotiations with Tehran over its nuclear programme.

Iran and world powers, including the US, signed the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action nuclear deal in 2015. Under the administration of former President Donald Trump, however, the US withdrew unilaterally from the deal in 2018.

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