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Lapid, Blinken Discuss Iran Nuclear Deal, US-Israel Relations in Rome

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Israeli Alternate Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Yair Lapid discussed “support for stability in the region, building on regional normalization efforts, and the need to improve Israeli-Palestinian relations”  in Rome on Sunday, according to a statement issued by State Department spokesperson Ned Price.

A major topic of discussion was the Iran nuclear deal, which the Biden administration is planning to reenter. Iran and the US are participating in indirect negotiations in Vienna to resurrect the deal originally signed with the world powers in 2015. The Trump administration took the US out of the deal in 2018 and put crippling sanctions back in place.

“Israel has some serious reservations about the Iran nuclear deal that is being put together in Vienna. We believe the way to discuss those disagreements is through direct and professional conversations, not in press conferences,” Lapid said

Lapid also acknowledged that bipartisan support was shattered during the tenure of former Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, saying that “mistakes were made.”

“Israel’s bipartisan standing was hurt. We will fix those mistakes together,” Lapid said.