More Iran sanctions, Netanyahu says

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin NetanyahuBenjamin (Bibi) NetanyahuMORE on Sunday said world powers need to put more sanctions on Iran.

Netanyahu criticized the deal floated by the United States and other members of the United Nations Security Council to loosen sanctions if Iran halts parts of its nuclear program.


"I think you should not only keep up the pressure, I think you should increase the pressure because it's finally working. And if you give it up now when you have that pressure, and Iran doesn't even take apart, dismantle one centrifuge, what leverage will you have when you've eased the pressure? It just doesn't make sense," he said on CNN's "State of the Union."

"If you went the other way, and you not only preserved the sanctions, instead of reducing them, you actually increased them, then all of these countries and all these companies would have to choose between the Iranian economy and the U.S. economy."

Netanyahu's comments coincide with an increased diplomatic push by Israel to undercut the deal the U.S. and other countries are working on with Iran. Israel has lobbied world leaders including France, which opposes the deal, and is working with its allies in Congress to push for a bill for increased sanctions against the country.

He has been a vocal opponent of a partial deal and warned of potentially dire consequences if it goes through.

"If you do a bad deal, you may get to the point where the only option is a military option, so a bad deal could get you to the place where you don't want to be," Netanyahu said.

"Israel always reserves the right to defend itself against any threat. I personally hope that a better deal is achieved because that's the way to achieve a peaceful diplomatic solution."