On June 13, 2021, Israel voted in new leaders, ending Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s 12 years in office. Most of the new leaders come from smaller parties, but they all were united in opposing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu remaining in office. Elected as Israel’s prime minister was Naftali Bennett while Yair Lapid became the country’s foreign minister. Despite these changes, government leaders say that there is no switch in the country’s Iran policy.
Israel Still Opposes New Arms Deal
Israel Foreign Minister Yair Lapid says that his country is still opposed to the new arms deal that the Biden administration has promoted. He says that one of his top priorities will be negotiating with the United States to encourage the current administration to support changes announced during President Trump’s term.
Lapid has also said that he may also use Mossad to spy on nuclear war weapon development in Iran.
Will There Be a Return to the 2015 Nuclear Accord?
Iran has said numerous times that they want to return to the 2015 nuclear accord. President Trump withdrew the United States from that accord. Almost any type of negotiated reinstatement of that accord is likely to improve the economy in Iran, which is struggling after sanctions between the United States and Iran were put in place. The powers of Iran’s president are limited, so Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei would have to change his mind before progress could be made in lessening Iran’s nuclear threat.
President Biden’s Response to New Israeli Government
On Monday, President Biden read a prepared statement welcoming the new Israeli government, without mentioning Israel Prime Minister Naftali Bennett. Biden says that the U.S. remains committed to protecting Israel’s safety.