Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday reiterated his support for US President Donald Trump’s stance against Iranian “aggression”, as tensions mount between Washington and Tehran.
“Israel and all the countries of the region and all the countries who seek peace in the world should stand together with the United States against Iranian aggression,” Netanyahu said at a ceremony to mark one year since the opening of the United States embassy in Jerusalem.
That controversial move came just days after Trump pulled out of the 2015 nuclear accord with Tehran, a decision celebrated by Iran’s archfoe Israel.
“We have to keep on strengthening the state of Israel and keep on strengthening the indispensable alliance with America,” Netanyahu said Tuesday, according to a statement published by his office.
His comments came as Washington deployed an aircraft carrier strike group and nuclear-capable bombers to the Gulf, to counter vaguely described threats from Tehran.
But despite the spike in tensions, both sides on Tuesday stated they did not want a war.
Netanyahu has been a vocal supporter of Trump’s Middle East policy, which has broken with years of consensus.
The US embassy move to Jerusalem was followed by just one other country - Guatemala - as the international community considers the city’s fate should be left to negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians.
Pulling out of the landmark nuclear deal, meanwhile, angered Europe, Russia and China who have stood by the agreement.
But as US sanctions on Iran take their toll, Tehran said last week it would abandon limits on its nuclear activities agreed under the 2015 accord.
The announcement prompted Netanyahu to vow he would not let Iran obtain a nuclear weapon, an objective denied by Tehran which insists its ambitions are civilian only.