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Source: The Times of Israel

Feb 25, 2023


Defense Minister Yoav Gallant’s office issues a readout from his Friday phone call with his American counterpart, Lloyd Austin.

According to the Defense Ministry, Gallant urged Austin to “increase operations to prevent a nuclear Iran.”

“The two discussed the security developments in the Middle East, including the Iranian nuclear issue and current events in the Palestinian arena,” his office says.

A Pentagon readout of the call said Austin urged Gallant to de-escalate tensions in the West Bank with the Palestinians after a deadly raid this week.

Gallant’s office says the defense minister briefed Austin on the raid in Nablus, saying the military “foiled a terror cell responsible for shooting attacks in Israel and planning future attacks.”

The pair also “discussed the joint efforts to calm the area ahead of the holidays,” his office says, adding that Gallant “emphasized the necessity of continuing the uncompromising fight against terror groups” in the West Bank.

On the Iranian issue, Gallant tells Austin that Israel is “very disturbed by the continued enrichment of uranium… and emphasized the need and commitment to prevent Iran from having a nuclear capability,” according to the readout.

Austin is expected to visit Israel next month, according to the Defense Ministry.

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