- REUTERS/Amir Cohen
- Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday gave a PowerPoint presentation on Iran’s nuclear program.
- Netanyahu reached one conclusion: Iran had lied about its nuclear ambitions.
- Netanyahu said Israeli intelligence had obtained about 100,000 “secret” files outlining what he described as a covert Iranian nuclear weapons program.
Standing in front of a massive screen, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday gave a PowerPoint presentation on Iran’s nuclear program.
He reached one conclusion: Iran had lied about its nuclear ambitions.
“Iran is brazenly lying” Netanyahu said. “The nuclear deal is based on lies.”
Speaking first in English, Netanyahu said Israeli intelligence had obtained, in “a great intelligence achievement,” about 100,000 “secret” files outlining what he described as a covert Iranian nuclear weapons program.
The prime minister pulled back two black sheets covering a shelf of what he said were 55,000 documents in several binders and a case with what he said were 183 compact disks that contained another 55,000 files.
- Screenshot via YouTube
Netanyahu said the files, obtained “a few weeks ago,” included documents, photos, and videos showing that the Iranian government had been pursuing enriched uranium, ballistic missiles, and nuclear weapons as far back as 2003.
He said Iran had continued to covertly pursue nuclear ambitions after signing the nuclear deal in 2015 with world powers, despite saying otherwise.
- Screenshot via YouTube
Netanyahu took direct aim at the Iran nuclear deal, known officially as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, calling it “a terrible deal” that “should never have been concluded.”
In his presentation, Netanyahu outlined his four conclusions:
- Iran lied about never having a nuclear weapons program.
- Even after the deal, Iran continued to “preserve and expand its nuclear weapons know-how for future use.”
- Iran lied to the International Atomic Energy Agency in 2015.
- The nuclear deal “is based on lies.”
Iran’s foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, pushed back on Netanyahu’s presentation in a tweet, including a photo of Netanyahu holding a chart in the shape of a bomb during a 2012 speech to the UN to illustrate the dangers of Iran’s nuclear threat:
BREAKING: The boy who can't stop crying wolf is at it again. Undeterred by cartoon fiasco at UNGA. You can only fool some of the people so many times. pic.twitter.com/W7saODfZDK
— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) April 30, 2018
Netanyahu ended the English part of his presentation by saying that the future of the deal was up to US President Donald Trump.
“In a few days’ time, President Trump will make a decision on what to do with the nuclear deal,” Netanyahu said. “I am sure he will do the right thing – the right thing for the United States, the right thing for Israel, and the right thing for the peace of the world.”
In January, Trump recertified the Iran nuclear deal, which is again up for review on May 12. White House officials, including Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, have recently signaled that Trump is likely to pull out of the deal.
Netanyahu finished his presentation in Hebrew and left without taking questions.