Barak to visit US for talks over Iran: Report

July 11th, 2008 - 5:12 pm ICT by IANS  

Jerusalem, July 11 (Xinhua) Israel’s Defence Minister Ehud Barak will head to the United States Monday for talks with the Pentagon over Iran, Jerusalem Post reported Friday. Sources say Israel is trying to convince the US that Iran is closer to passing the nuclear threshold than Washington believes.

Barak will spend three days there, holding talks with Defence Secretary Robert Gates, Vice President Dick Cheney, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, said the report.

Barak is also likely to meet President George W. Bush, according to Israeli defence officials.

Barak’s Monday trip to the United States, days after Mossad chief Meir Dagan was in Washington for meetings with key intelligence officials, will be part of a series of consultations apparently aimed at coordinating policies against the Iranian nuclear threat, said the daily.

A week after Barak’s visit, Israel Defence Forces Chief of General Staff Gabi Ashkenazi will head to Washington for his own round of talks with American defence chiefs, including Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Michael Mullen, who was in Israel two weeks ago.

Barak Thursday warned Iran in the wake of the Islamic Republic’s missile test that Israel would not hesitate to resort to military action.

Iran’s Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Major General Mohammad-Ali Jafari said the armed forces were testing the accuracy and range of the high-tech missiles, adding that the recent military exercise was a warning to enemies of the Islamic republic.

The IRGC Wednesday successfully test fired new long- and medium-range missiles, including its Shahab 3 version with a range of 2,000 km which covers almost all important Israeli cities.

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