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Iran complains to UN after Netanyahu’s alleged 'nuclear threat'

Prime minister misspoke, his office clarifies shortly after UNGA address

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks at the United Nations Headquarters during the the 78th General Assembly in New York City, Sept. 22, 2023. (Photo: John Lamparski/NurPhoto)

Iran sent a letter of complaint to the United Nations after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu allegedly threatened to use nuclear weapons against the regime during his speech at the UN General Assembly last week, according to Iran’s IRNA news agency on Wednesday.

In the letter sent to the secretary-general and the presidents of the UN General Assembly (UNGA) and the Security Council (INSC), Tehran’s ambassador to the UN, Amir Saeid Iravani, decried Netanyahu’s “alarming and serious threat... to make use of nuclear weapons against Iran.”

The relevant portion of Netanyahu's speech last Friday read: “Western powers promised that if Iran violated the nuclear deal, the sanctions would be snapped back… sanctions must be snapped back, and above all, Iran must face a credible nuclear threat.”

Shortly after the speech, the Prime Minister’s Office put out a statement saying that Netanyahu had meant to say, “credible military threat,” but misspoke.

Netanyahu has reportedly used this phrase frequently in the context of the Iranian nuclear weapons program, saying that it could only be stopped by effective sanctions coupled with the threat of a potential military strike.

Despite the clarification, which is also reflected in the official text of the speech as published on UNGA’s website, Iravani claims that Netanyahu “made explicit threats to use nuclear weapons against an independent member state of the United Nations.”

The Iranian envoy added that he saw the threat as “more serious and intense” coming from Israel, which he described as an “illegitimate regime that has been widely condemned for aggressions, for apartheid policies and for support for terrorism, as well as for possessing an arsenal of weapons of mass destruction alongside advanced conventional weapons.”

He demanded a “strong response from the international community” and stressed that Iran had the right to a “decisive response to any threats and illegal actions caused by the Israeli regime.”

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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