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Mossad chief heads to US as Iran nuclear talks stall

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Mossad chief David Barnea was due to travel Sunday to Washington to discuss Iran with senior Biden administration officials.

The trip comes days after the halt of renewed negotiations to restore the 2015 accord limiting Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief, with the United States saying the Iranians did not appear serious about reaching a deal.

The Haaretz daily reported that Barnea will seek to convince the US leadership not to seek an interim deal that would not see Iran return to full compliance with the agreement, and instead seek to enlist international support for tough sanctions on Tehran.

The newspaper said the meetings have been described as “extremely significant.”

The spy chief will stress that if an agreement with Iran is ultimately reached, Israel will not be bound by it and will continue with efforts to thwart the Islamic Republic’s nuclear work, according to the Ynet news site.

Barnea, who will be acting as an emissary for Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, also reportedly plans to present the Americans with new information on Iran’s program.

Defense Minister Benny Gantz will visit the US later in the week for talks also expected to focus on Iran.

Barnea’s trip follows his vow Thursday that Iran will never acquire nuclear arms. He also said a bad deal between Tehran and world powers would be “intolerable” for Israel.

On Saturday, a US official said Iran had backed away from all its previous compromises on reviving the 2015 nuclear pact and that........

© The Times of Israel

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