World Israel warns on Iran as nuclear talks progress
Iran nuclear talks will survive presidential vote: analysts
Iran's presidential vote next week will likely replace a moderate with an ultraconservative, but this shouldn't derail ongoing nuclear talks because there is a broad political consensus in Tehran that they should succeed, analysts say. All major players in Tehran, whatever their ideological leanings, are pragmatic enough to know that only by saving the tattered 2015 nuclear deal can the Islamic republic free itself from crippling US sanctions, they argue.
Israel's Prime Minister has strongly criticised Iran as world powers held talks to revive a landmark nuclear deal with the country.
Diplomats have adjourned talks in Vienna, saying progress had been made but problems remain.
It is not clear when the next round of talks will take place.
It comes after Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said Iran's "regime of brutal hangmen" wants nuclear weapons - something Iran has repeatedly denied.
Iran elected Ebrahim Raisi as its new president on Friday.
The election race was widely seen as being designed to favour Mr Raisi. The president-elect - who will be inaugurated in August - is under US sanctions and has been linked to past executions of political prisoners. He is is Iran's top judge and holds ultra-conservative views.
Mossad Chief Stops Short of Confirming Israel Behind Iran Nuclear Attacks
"It doesn't look like it used to look," Yossi Cohen said of the cellar of Iran's nuclear Natanz facility.Two major explosions erupted at Iran's nuclear plant Natanz in July 2020 and most recently in April, Iran blamed Israel for the incidents. When Mossad's outgoing chief Yossi Cohen was asked by the interviewer where he would take them if they could travel to Iran's nuclear facility, Cohen said "to the cellar" where "the centrifuges used to spin.
Iran insists its nuclear programme is peaceful. Suspicions it was being used a cover to build a nuclear bomb led to crippling sanctions from the EU, US and UN Security Council in 2010.
Five years later Iran reached a deal with six powers - the US, UK, France, China, Russia and Germany - that saw it limit its nuclear activities in return for sanctions relief. Israel however condemned the deal.
Former US President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew from the agreement in 2018 and brought back in the tough sanctions. His successor Joe Biden is now looking for a way for the US to rejoin, though US ally Israel remains opposed to it.
What happened in Vienna?
Negotiators from the six signatory countries and Iran have been holding talks in Austria's capital Vienna since April.
Netanyahu's 12-year tenure ends as Israel's parliament approves new government
Israel's parliament has voted in favour of a new coalition government, ending Benjamin Netanyahu's 12-year consecutive tenure as premier. © Reuters Pro- and anti-Netanyahu protesters rallied in Jerusalem on potentially his last day as Israel's prime minister The vote was 60-59, putting ultra-nationalist Naftali Bennett, a hi-tech millionaire and Orthodox Jew, as the new leader in a power-sharing deal with centrist leader and former TV host Yair Lapid, who will take over as PM in 2023 for two years.
Video: Former Iranian president calls out the U.S. for 'meddling' in the Middle East (CNBC)
On Sunday they gathered for a sixth round of indirect talks between the US and Iran about reviving the agreement, but adjourned for the delegates to return to their capitals.
A spokesman for the US State Department earlier said the indirect talks would still continue after Mr Raisi takes power.
Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi told state television on Sunday that the parties are "now closer than ever" to a deal, but added that bridging the remaining distance between them "is not an easy job". He said the Iranian team will now return to Tehran for consultations.
Enrique Mora, envoy for the EU, echoed Mr Araqchi. "We are closer than we were one week ago. But we are not still there," he said. Progress on technical issues has given them greater clarity, he said, and "allows us to have also a clear idea of what the political problems are."
Ultraconservative tipped to win as Iran elects president
Iranian voters went to the polls Friday in a presidential election in which ultraconservative cleric Ebrahim Raisi is seen as all but certain to coast to victory over his vetted rivals. - Reviving nuclear deal - Iran has often pointed to voter participation as proof of democratic legitimacy -- but polls signal the turnout Friday may drop below the 43 percent of last year's parliamentary election.After a lacklustre campaign, turnout is expected to plummet to a new low in a country exhausted by a punishing regime of US economic sanctions and the Covid-19 pandemic.
US national security adviser Jake Sullivan meanwhile said there was "still a fair distance to travel" on issues including sanctions, adding that the final decision lies with Iran.
What has Israel said?
Israel remains opposed to the agreement and has repeatedly insisted that Iran wants to develop nuclear weapons.
The country's new Prime Minister Naftali Bennett told his cabinet on Sunday that this was "the last chance for world powers to wake up... and understand who they are doing business with".
"A regime of brutal hangmen must never be allowed to have weapons of mass destruction."
Iran and Israel have been in a long-running "shadow war", which has resulted in both countries taking part in tit-for-tat actions, but so far avoiding all-out conflict. Recently, however, the hostilities between the two have escalated again.
The situation is complex, but one big source of tension is Iran's nuclear activities.
Iran blames Israel forlast year and in April.
Ayatollah Khamenei has repeatedly called for the elimination of the state of Israel. In 2018, he described the country as a "cancerous tumour" that had to be removed from the region.
Iran is currently enriching uranium at its highest levels ever - although still short of what is needed to make nuclear-grade weapons.
Nationals launch push for nuclear energy in Australia .
The discussion comes after nuclear supporter Barnaby Joyce was re-elected as leader of National Party in a coup that ousted Michael McCormack.According to The Australian, ministers from both the Liberal and National parties have discussed taking the policy to the next election, which is due by May.