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Kerry: ‘No Daylight’ Between U.S. and Israel on Iran

• November 24, 2013 10:50 am

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Secretary of State John Kerry claimed Sunday on This Week that "no daylight" existed between the U.S. and Israel with respect to their goals to keep Iran from attaining a nuclear weapon.

Iran and six world powers reached an agreement Saturday aimed at curbing Iran's nuclear activity in return for the lifting of economic sanctions, but Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu swiftly condemned the deal, calling it a "historic mistake" and one that made his country less safe.

The Washington Free Beacon reported Iranian officials announced the upcoming construction of two new nuclear plants on Saturday, just hours before the United States and Western nations signed the nuclear agreement.

ABC host George Stephanopoulos brought up Netanyahu's remarks, but Kerry called the prime minister's concerns that it would not stop Iran in its ability to break out and get a weapon "not accurate."

Full exchange:

GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: We just heard the Israeli prime minister Bibi Netanyahu call it a bad deal. Are you confident that you can convince him to respect it and that Israel will not take unilateral military action against the Iranian nuclear program?

JOHN KERRY: Well, actually, Israel and the United States absolutely share the same goal here. There is no daylight between us with respect to what we want to achieve at this point. We both want to make it certain that Iran cannot have a nuclear weapon and Iran cannot be in a place where they can break out and suddenly get that weapon.

STEPHANOPOULOS: But the prime minister says the deal won't do that.

KERRY: That's not accurate. The deal is the beginning and first step. It leads us into the negotiation so that we guarantee that, while we are negotiating for the dismantling, while we are negotiating for the tougher provisions, they will not grow the program in their capacity to threaten Israel. Israel will actually gain a larger breathing space in terms of the breakout capacity of Iran. It's just clear.