Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz said Thursday that the Iran nuclear deal is “in the ER room” as an agreement between the US and Iran to revive the accord seems increasingly unlikely.
Israel has ramped up the pressure on the Biden administration to harden its stance in the negotiations with Iran, and it appears to have worked. “The Iran nuclear deal seems like it is in the ER room,” Gantz said at Reichman University in Herzliya, Israel, according to Reuters.
“There’s a period maybe after the elections, we’ll see how it goes,” Gantz said, referring to the US midterm elections that will be held in November. An unnamed Israeli official told reporters earlier this week that a deal was unlikely before the US midterms.
On Tuesday, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that an agreement with Iran was “unlikely,” in the clearest indication yet from the Bidena administration that a deal won’t happen. He put all the blame on Iran and accused the Iranians of being “unwilling” to negotiate an agreement.
While Blinken puts all the blame on Iran, the Biden administration has taken a hardline approach to Tehran and has continued and expanded the so-called “maximum pressure campaign” of the Trump administration. Throughout the negotiations, the US implemented new sanctions and is reportedly considering more.
The Wall Street Journal reported that the administration is considering adding sanctions on Iran over the stabbing of author Salman Rushdie, an incident Tehran has said it was not involved with. Former Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khomeini called for Rushdie’s death back in the 1980s, but there’s been no evidence linking Tehran to his recent stabbing, which was carried out by a 24-year-old Lebanese-American.