Israel’s foreign minister on Wednesday said it's not the business of the United States whether his country decides to attack Iran.
Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said that warnings from the United States and Russia about an attack would not affect Israel’s decision-making.
“[It] is not their business,” Lieberman said in an interview with an Israeli TV station Wednesday, according to The Associated Press.
“The security of the citizens of Israel, the future of the state of Israel, this is the Israeli government’s responsibility,” he said.
Lieberman’s comments come after Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey said Sunday that an Israeli attack would be “destabilizing” for the region.
President Obama has said that the United States will not allow the Iranians to obtain a nuclear weapon, but Israeli officials say their country’s existence is threatened by a nuclear Iran. The Israelis have suggested they might attack Iran to stop its nuclear program with or without U.S. assistance.
Iran says that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only, but Israel, the United States and their allies believe Iran is striving to create a nuclear weapon.
U.S. officials have pushed Israel to wait for sanctions against Iran to have an impact on the country that could convince the Iranians to abandon their nuclear pursuits.
U.S. National Security Adviser Tom Donilon just returned from a visit to Israel, where he met with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and other top Israeli officials.
Netanyahu and Obama have a meeting scheduled March 5 at the White House while Netanyahu is in the country for the AIPAC convention.