Merkel urges Israel not to strike Iran

2012-08-31 14:54

Jerusalem - German Chancellor Angela Merkel has urged Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu not to order a military strike against Iranian nuclear sites, the newspaper Haaretz reported on Friday.

The article, citing an Israeli official on condition of anonymity, said Merkel had called Netanyahu 10 days ago amid a wave of reports of an imminent Israeli attack, to give a "clear message as to her opposition" to such action.

Merkel urged Netanyahu to "give more time for sanctions and diplomacy to work", and warned of the consequences of such an attack for security in the Middle East.

A spokesperson for Netanyahu refused to comment on the report or to confirm the conversation had taken place.

Israel and its main ally the US accuse Iran of seeking to develop an atomic arsenal, but Tehran insists its nuclear programme is for civilian purposes only.


Netanyahu told a visiting US congressman last Friday that Iran was speeding up its quest for nuclear weapons in defiance of international sanctions.

The Haaretz article described the phone call as "exceptional" given the "almost complete disconnect" for two months between Merkel and Netanyahu after a sharp disagreement over Israeli settlements and the Palestinian issue.

Deputy government spokesperson Georg Streiter told a Berlin news conference he could "not confirm [the information in] this article", reminding that Berlin did not believe in a military solution to the Iran nuclear issue.

Merkel also said an Israeli attack would have severe consequences for the EU and that international sanctions, which were taking their toll on Iran, should be strengthened and given time to work, Haaretz wrote.

Iran has doubled its capacity to produce enriched uranium at its underground Fordo plant, according to an International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report released late on Thursday.

The IAEA also accuses Iran of frustrating UN inspection of its Parchin plant, where it suspects tests of explosives that could be used in a nuclear warhead were carried out, by scrubbing it clean.

Netanyahu said on Thursday he would present to the UN the "truth about the terror regime of Iran" at his General Assembly address in late September.

  • shireen.chodree - 2012-08-31 15:25

    They should have searched Israel first for weapons of mass distruction cos that where it has been all the time. They dont like competition. So, before going into Iran first check Israel. They've been manufacturing nuclear weapons for many years.

      larry.lachman.54 - 2012-08-31 15:52

      Shireen, do you live in a bubble of stupid or something. Israel is a caring civilised first world democracy, whose government is elected by Israeli citizens. Iran supports and funds terrorist militias and despotic governments like Iran and Zimbabwe who keep themselves in power by slaughtering those of their citizens who seek justice and freedom.

  • K9Lakhan - 2012-08-31 15:58

    @All: Its time for peace.

      fred.fraser.12 - 2012-08-31 16:44

      Couldn't agree more.

      larry.lachman.54 - 2012-09-01 15:04

      Israel has its hand out but none want to take it.

  • blackpower.africaneuropean - 2012-08-31 18:23

    Seems to me that the Israeli leaders have a death wish. They are acting irresponsibly towards their own people. Attacking Iran is not only an international crime but will give a good excuse for many groups to attack Israel.

      fred.fraser.12 - 2012-08-31 19:36

      The IAEA, the same agency that tried to dissuade the US from invading Iraq, has stated that the Iranian regime is hiding nuclear facilities.

  • blackpower.africaneuropean - 2012-08-31 18:23

    Israel wants this war bad they have to topple Syria and Iran the last 2 countries that don't bow down to them as being the "Masters Of The Middle East". So Israel has to spread lies in stories, comments, blogs, etc, that attacking Iran would be a 15 minutes operation. Well after 10 years in Iraq and tons of violence and Trillions of dollars spent, and more violence in Iraq than ever, the USA still doesn't control what's going on there, NOW Iran is a way bigger country than Iraq and way better fighters. Iraq is the size of the East Coast of the USA. You're looking at a 20 year war, at least. Don't buy Israel's lies, and maybe you can save the lives of a lot of young Americans too.

      fred.fraser.12 - 2012-08-31 19:33

      Iranians are bubbling to get their government back. You should info yourself about who the Iranian regime is and what they do, distinct from the Iranian people. You're confusing the two. Your anti-Israel and anti-US prejudices are also blinding you to a truer perception of reality.

  • dayaan.deskay - 2012-08-31 22:15

    To all the Pro-Israel warmongers here is something to think about: "An Israeli attack on Iran would delay but probably not stop its nuclear programme, the most senior US military officer has claimed. General Martin Dempsey reinforced Washington's opposition to unilateral Israel military action as he made clear that US military chiefs were equally wary of getting ensnared in Syria.Distancing himself from any Israeli plan to bomb Iran, Dempsey said such an attack would "clearly delay but probably not destroy Iran's nuclear programme".He added: "I don't want to be complicit if they [Israel] choose to do it."Dempsey said he did not know Iran's nuclear intentions, as intelligence did not reveal intentions." This was all revealed in an interview the general gave As he says they do not know what Iran's nuclear intentions are but the pro-israeli warmongers here state as fact that Iran is making a nuclear bomb its amazing how these israeli warmongers knows more than the joint chiefs of staff chairman general Martin Dempsey

      fred.fraser.12 - 2012-08-31 22:27

      The attack would not be on Iran; it would be on the Iranian regime that has stolen the Iranian government from the Iranian people.

      fred.fraser.12 - 2012-08-31 22:28

      Clearly, you hold and anti-Israel prejudice which is blinding you to what is really going on.

      fred.fraser.12 - 2012-08-31 22:30

      The Iranian regime adjusts elections to hold onto power. It has stolen the Iranian government from the Iranian people. It funds the Jihadist movement that has killed and maimed hundreds of thousands of innocent people, mainly Muslims in the Middle East, Africa and elsewhere. It is supporting Bashar Assad's brutal oppression of Syrians wanting nothing more than the right to vote. It supports the stoning of women. It openly calls for the elimination of Israel and denies the Holocaust, the single biggest attempt at human genocide in human history: six million people. It is dishonest, highly repressive, and self-serving at the expense of the Iranian people and humanity. It's days are numbered, and it knows this. This is why, in all probability, it is trying to develop nuclear weapons.

      larry.lachman.54 - 2012-09-01 15:15

      Israel and its supporters are not the warmongers in this spat with Iran. It is Iran who refuses to acknowledge Israel's right to exist, and it is Iran who makes statements that Israel will be wiped off the map. It is Iran who supports and arms hamas and Hisballah terror organisations to attack Israel citizens, woman and children. Israel will defend itself and you will lose as always. Humiliating, isn't it. Too effing bad.

  • fidel.mgoqi - 2012-09-01 14:32

    Finally the Germans are quitting their perpetual bad decisions and are beginning to take their responsibility to the international community seriously. Turning their eyes away from rogue Israel, because of their guilty conscience, is an embarrassment to the German people! It appears that Germany's moral obligation to make up for the Holocaust by going out of its way to support Israel is over.

      larry.lachman.54 - 2012-09-01 15:11

      Germany, France, the UK and USA are firmly behind Israel, and any attack on Israel by Iran will bring these players into a united front against Iran. This front already exists. Germany may very well attempt to impose its will upon Israel, as does the USA and others, and they are welcome to their opinions, however israel WILL take care of its own interests first.

      fred.fraser.12 - 2012-09-01 15:40

      Fidel continues to be upside-down on world affairs, holding the belief that Nelson Mandela isa phony, a lackey of West, a modern-day Uncle Tom. Imagine that.

      fidel.mgoqi - 2012-09-01 16:01

      @Larry Who said anything about attacking Israel. What is significant is that the Germans seem to have had enough of protecting Israel from diplomatic censure.

      gerhard.kress.3 - 2012-09-01 16:08

      Mgoqi once again you are saddling the horse the other way round. LOL!

      fred.fraser.12 - 2012-09-01 19:00

      Like Fidel, Patrick is upside down. Everyone knows it is the Iranian regime (distinct from the Iranian people) that continuously threatens to destroy Israel. "Wipe Israel off the face of the Earth" are the words it most often uses. Until I'madinnerjacket pronounced these words again a few weeks ago, Patrick denied he ever said them.

      fred.fraser.12 - 2012-09-01 19:05

      The only valid reason to censure Israel is when it goes too far in defending itself, causing hardship to others. The problem with popular, superficial, street-rhetoric is that it deletes the "self-defense" part of the equation, and assumes Israel is the aggressor. This is false. Moreover, the rhetoric has been plied by unelected dictators and brutal autocratic regimes as ploys to distract their own populations from their oppressed conditions at the hands of these regimes and dictatorships. Thankfully they are now being removed by their populations, one by one. Their lies have become obvious in the Information Age.

      larry.lachman.54 - 2012-09-02 08:37

      Lesego/Patrick, as a half-wit, you can only be expected to see the half of the truth that suits your half-wit mentality.

      fred.fraser.12 - 2012-09-02 08:49

      It is entirely consistent with your consistently faulty perspective that you see that, Patrick. It is testimony to reality being the exact opposite.

      larry.lachman.54 - 2012-09-02 17:48

      Patrick/lesego, you can say what you want, but you will be put in your place and we will not condone your half-wit ignorance and skewed reality.

  • duncan.gill1 - 2012-09-01 19:37

    Every country has the right to self defense this is true in Iran's case as well as Israels.Israel has earned no friends with its policies towards the Palestinians and this has influenced Iran's policy of political confrontation with Israel.Israel now fears an Iran that could have plans to develop nuclear weapons,frankly it doesn't surprise me that Iran might want such weapons as Israel has them..this is common knowledge,they helped us build a few devices during apartheid years!So Israel has good reason to worry but in any case the policies of Israel cause only more paranoia amongst its people,personally I have always believed that Israel's best chance for peace is to give up on a Zionist state and embrace some kind of unity state or a federation with the Palestinians.Inevitably Israel will be a majority Palestinian state anyway given the birth rate amongst the Palestinian population,so what chance they can continue along the path they now follow its all just folly is all..Jews will have a far better chance for peace and prosperity once they drop this agenda!

      fidel.mgoqi - 2012-09-01 20:45

      Brilliant, it's a pity Israelis feel so endowed that they have difficulty sitting!

      fred.fraser.12 - 2012-09-02 08:50

      Israel was created in 1948 from 52% of the land formerly occupied by the Jewish and Palestinian people, and Palestine 43%. Most of the Israeli territory was the Negev Desert. Jerusalem fell into neither territory. Palestinians with their unelected, self-serving neighbors declared war on Israel the very next day. In the 1960's they even invaded Israel twice. Full military invasions. The result: Israel survived and pushed them back, gaining territory in the process. This is the origin of what some wrongly call "stealing land". There have been almost daily attacks by Palestinians, incited by their self-serving unelected backers. Palestinians even teach their children at Kindergarten to attack Israel, rather than be peaceful. Children. Kindergarten. From day one, and even today it's wage war on Israel. Israel defends herself. Yes sometimes going too far, which is unacceptable, but self-defense nonetheless. All that needs to happen is for Palestinians to choose peace side by side with Israel. This is more likely going forward now because the unelected dictators are being removed from power by their people, one by one. They will no longer use the Palestinians for their own internal political ploys.

      fred.fraser.12 - 2012-09-02 08:53

      I do agree that Israelis and Palestinians are heading for a one-state solution. Neither knows this is happening yet. :)

      larry.lachman.54 - 2012-09-02 17:51

      Fred, I asked you about your one state solution opinion before and got no response. Perhaps you did not see it. As we serve a common defense of Israel here, I would really like to hear your views on this issue.

  • diana.gill.18 - 2012-09-01 19:59

    The first word of wisdom from the Frau. Idiots who instigate the war dont realize that the first nuclear strike launched by whoever from wherever will be the beginning of Armageddon.

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