September 21, 2009
[efoods]Israel has not given up the option of a military strike on Iran’s nuclear program, the chief of Israel’s military and a senior Israeli official said on Monday, refuting remarks made over the weekend by Russian President Dmitry Medvedev.
“Israel has the right to defend itself and all options are on the table,” Israel Lieutenant-General Gabi Askenazi said during a rare interview on Army Radio.
The army chief’s statement comes after Medvedev said on Sunday that Israeli President Shimon Peres assured him it would not attack Iran.
Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon was asked by Reuters on Monday if the comment by Peres, as reported by Medvedev, was a guarantee there would be no Israeli strike on Iran.
“It is certainly not a guarantee,” Ayalon said. “I don’t think that, with all due respect, the Russian president is authorised to speak for Israel and certainly we have not taken any option off the table.”