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President Obama Says Israel Has Not Decided To Strike Iran
Updated May 5, 2013 12:10 AM | Filed under: WBIW News
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(WASHINGTON D.C.)(CNN) - President Barack Obama on Sunday said Israel has not decided whether it will strike Iran, but added if tensions escalate this spring, no options would be taken off the table.

"I don't think Israel has made a decision," Obama said.

But he stressed that the United States would work with Israel to resolve the situation using diplomacy.

"(Israel), like us, believe(s) that Iran has to stand down on its nuclear weapons program," he said.

His comments came after Defense Secretary Leon Panetta told reporters on Thursday there is a growing likelihood Israel could attack Iran in the spring.

Obama argued Iran is "feeling the pinch" after the international community has enforced sanctions in an "unprecedented" way to pressure the country away from developing its suspected nuclear weapons facilities.

"Until they do, I think Israel is going to be rightly very concerned. And we are, as well," Obama said.

Obama said the U.S. has closer "intelligence and military consultations" with Israel than ever. And while he insisted his administration is adamant for a peaceful resolution, the president didn't rule out military involvement.

"We're not going to take options off the table. And I've been very clear, we're going to do everything we can to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon and creating a nuclear arms race in a volatile region," Obama said.



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