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Netanyahu Says Not Surprised By Iran's Enrichment Intentions

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addresses a press conference after a meeting with the German chancellor at the Chancellery in Berlin on June 4, 2018. Benjamin Netanyahu embarked on a three-day European tour in Germany set to be dominated by str
PARIS, June 5 (Reuters)

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Tuesday that Israel was not surprised by Iran's declared intention to increase uranium enrichment capacity and reaffirmed a vow to prevent it from obtaining nuclear weapons.

"Two days ago, Ayatollah Khamenei, Iran's leader, declared that his intention is to destroy the State of Israel. Yesterday, he said how he would do this, by unlimited enrichment in order to produce an arsenal of nuclear bombs," Netanyahu said in a video statement on Twitter.

"We are not surprised, we will not allow Iran to obtain nuclear weapons," said Netanyahu, who is in France as part of a tour to persuade European countries to follow Washington's lead in abandoning the nuclear deal that world powers signed with Tehran in 2015.

Khamenei, Iran's top leader, said on Monday he had ordered preparations to increase uranium enrichment capacity if the nuclear agreement falls apart after the U.S. withdrawal, and he vowed never to accept limits on Tehran's ballistic missile programme.

European signatories are scrambling to save the accord, which they see as crucial to forestalling an Iranian nuclear weapon. They are seeking to ring-fence trade with Iran against new U.S. financial sanctions to dissuade Tehran from quitting the deal.

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