Bad deal with Iran could lead to war: Israel's Netanyahu

JERUSALEM Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:55am EST

Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends a Likud-Beitenu faction meeting at the Knesset, the Israeli parliament, in Jerusalem November 11, 2013. REUTERS/Amir Cohen

Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends a Likud-Beitenu faction meeting at the Knesset, the Israeli parliament, in Jerusalem November 11, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Amir Cohen

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JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Wednesday that war could result from a bad deal between world powers and Iran over its nuclear program.

Netanyahu has been lobbying against any agreement at talks due to resume in Geneva on November 20 that would fail to strip Iran of nuclear enrichment capabilities. He has urged no let-up in international economic sanctions.

He has often hinted at possible Israeli military action if diplomacy and sanctions failed to block what he says is Iran's goal of building atomic weapons.

Addressing parliament, in a session focusing on housing issues, Netanyahu said continued economic pressure on Iran was the best alternative to two other options, which he described as a bad deal and war.

"I would go so far as to say that a bad deal could lead to the second, undesired option," he said, referring to war.

There is deep skepticism among security experts abroad and in Israel over whether its military could cause lasting damage on its own to Iran's deeply buried atomic facilities.

Iran says it is pursuing its nuclear program solely for peaceful purposes.

(Reporting by Jeffrey Heller)

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