Speaking at the annual dinner of the United Jewish Israel Appeal, Prime Minister David Cameron acknowledged the danger that a nuclear Iran poses to the world, but cautioned Israel against military action at this juncture.
Iran has so far refused to calm international fears that its nuclear programme is designed to produce an atomic weapon. Cameron yesterday made British concerns clear, saying, “A nuclear armed Iran is a threat to Israel and a threat to the world. And this country will work unwaveringly to prevent that from happening.”
He also warned Tehran that “In the long term, if Iran makes the wrong choice, nothing is off the table,” in what is thought to be an allusion to military action.
However, Cameron also cautioned Israel against launching a military strike at this point in time, adding “I have said to Prime Minister Netanyahu that now is not the time for Israel to resort to military action.” Cameron argued that an Israeli strike would give the Iranian leadership the opportunity to rally its people at a time when sanctions are beginning to yield internal pressure on the regime.
Meanwhile, European Union foreign ministers yesterday approved a new set of tough measures against Iran, with negotiations having so far failed to resolve the impasse over Tehran’s nuclear development. The new measures ban most transactions between EU and Iranian banks. They also forbid any EU member state from exporting metals including aluminium and steel to Iran.
Foreign Secretary William Hague commented on the new sanctions, saying “This is a sign of our resolve in the European Union…that we will step up the pressure, we will intensify the pressure and we will continue to do so over the coming months unless negotiations succeed.”