Iran's word on dismantling nuclear weapons not enough: Israeli minister

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Jerusalem, Oct 8: Mere words from Iran are not enough and it must take concrete action to dismantle its nuclear weapons programme, a visiting Israeli minister said on Tuesday.

"Our position vis-a-vis Iran is quite straight forward. Iran is progressing in military programme to acquire a nuclear bomb. All the evidences are very clear. We are aware of the diplomatic process in place and we would be very happy to see dismantling the nuclear programme," Israel's Economy Minister Naftali Bennett told reporters at a press meet here.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had recently called the Iran's new President Hassan Rouhani "a wolf in sheep's clothing" and asserted that his country will do whatever it takes to prevent Tehran from developing nuclear weapons.

"We need now a definite move from soothing words to clear actions that are verifiable. What is needed is taking out enriched uranium taken out of Iran," said Bennett making Tel Aviv's stand on the issue clear.

However, on the issue of attack on Israeli diplomat's wife by suspected Iranians, Bennett did not elaborate much. "I think it was done by an Iranian-based terror group. I know India is doing its best. We encourage that effort of India."

On the issue of dismantling chemical weapons in neighbouring Syria, Bennett said: "It is good for everyone. Hundreds of thousands of lethal chemical weapon is bad in s place like Syria.

"We are looking at it cautiously because it is going to be a process and the key is to continue monitoring it every step of the way. We think the Western powers are seeing it through."

He said both India and Israel are victims of cross-border terror and have been cooperating closely to fight this.

"We do not choose our neighbourhood, where we live I don't know how long will this instability last. Look north, you see Syria, look south you see Egypt... The world is changing. We might be looking at a very prolonged era of instability. I view Israel as a lighthouse in the storm. Amidst this storm we will send out light and do good. That is what we have been doing," he added.

IANS

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