Reprinted from Honest Reporting.
Iran’s current stockpile of uranium enriched to 60 percent has given it the ability to produce the fuel necessary to manufacture a first nuclear bomb in “as short as one month,” according to a new International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report.
The report has raised concerns as talks focused on the US rejoining the 2015 nuclear deal have stalled, and as Israeli leaders have called for urgent action while stressing that they are preparing for every possible action to prevent the Islamic Republic from obtaining the bomb.
Meanwhile, Biden Administration officials reportedly maintain that Tehran is still a few months away from being able to fully construct a bomb, as the Iranians would need to produce a warhead irrespective of whether they have sufficient nuclear material.
On Monday, Western powers scrapped plans for a resolution criticizing Iran at the IAEA — the United Nations’ atomic watchdog — after Tehran agreed to prolong the monitoring of some of its nuclear activities.
Disarming Hamas and halting Iranian aggression were high on the agenda when Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett on Monday met with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in Sharm e-Sheikh in the Sinai Peninsula.
The two leaders also discussed securing the return of two Israelis being held captive by Hamas as well as the remains of two IDF soldiers killed in the Gaza Strip during the 2014 war.
“It was a very important and good meeting,” Bennett said thereafter, adding, “first and foremost, we created a foundation for deep ties in the future.”
Bennett was the first Israeli prime minister to publicly visit Egypt since his predecessor Benjamin Netanyahu in 2011 met with former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak at the same Red Sea resort.
The Bennett-Sisi meeting took place amid ongoing violence emanating from Gaza and a spike in terrorist attacks in the West Bank and in Jerusalem, where two Israelis on Monday were injured in a stabbing attack near the central bus station.
Since the end of May’s 11-day Hamas-initiated war against Israel, Sisi has attempted to broker a long-term truce but those efforts appear to have faltered this week as terrorists in Gaza have repeatedly launched rockets at Israel.
Over the last few days the Shin Bet security service and Israeli police have foiled a number of major attacks, local media reported. Meanwhile, police were going on high alert, fearing further violence — particularly in Jerusalem — over the upcoming Yom Kippur holiday.
Several stabbing attacks have taken place this week, with both Israeli offiicials and Palestinian terror groups saying the violence was inspired by the prison escape from the high-security Gilboa Prison last Monday.
Four of the six prisoners were recaptured by police over the weekend, but two remain at large and Israeli security forces believe they may be hiding in the West Bank and receiving assistance from Palestinians.
“I don’t know if we are on the verge of an escalation,” Public Security Minister Omer Barlev was quoted as saying. “But we are definitely in a very sensitive period — the recent attacks, the escape of the terrorists from the prison and the two who have not yet been caught, alongside our problems with Hamas,” he noted.
Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations Gilad Erdan on Monday offered bipartisan praise to the Trump and Biden administrations for helping to “nurture” the Abraham Accords.
The lesson is “don’t try to force anything on Israel,” Erdan said at a United Nations event in New York City marking the one-year anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the Jewish state and the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain. Morocco and Sudan later followed suit.
Nearly 70 UN ambassadors participated in the event, which was co-hosted by the Permanent Missions of Israel, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Morocco to the United Nations.
Meanwhile, 312 lawmakers from Europe, North America and Israel signed a statement urging countries around the world to help end discrimination against the Jewish state at the UN.
Spearheaded by the American Jewish Committee’s Transatlantic Friends of Israel, the move comes ahead of the opening of the 76th Session of the UN General Assembly.
“Within the context of rising global antisemitism, the relentless, disproportionate, and ritualistic condemnation of the world’s only Jewish state at the UN is particularly dangerous and must finally end,” the statement reads in part. “Israel deserves attention and scrutiny, as does every other nation. But it also merits equal treatment – nothing more, nothing less.”
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