Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke on the phone earlier this evening with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, who is currently in Saudi Arabia where he’s been discussing a potential Israel normalization agreement with Saudi leaders, the premier’s office says.
The call was ostensibly scheduled by Blinken’s office in order for the secretary to update Netanyahu on his talks in the Gulf kingdom, but the readout from the Prime Minister’s Office makes no direct mention of the normalization issue.
Instead, the Israeli readout states that Netanyahu expressed his appreciation for the military and intelligence cooperation Israel has with the US, “which is at an all-time high.”
He also thanked Blinken for the “candid discussions” that took place last week in Washington between Netanyahu’s aides and senior officials in the Biden administration about the Iran nuclear file and expanding the Abraham Accords.
In addition, Netanyahu proposed promoting joint Israeli-American cooperation in the field of artificial intelligence, which has been on the premier’s mind lately following discussions with ChatGPT founder Sam Altman and Twitter CEO Elon Musk.
Netanyahu and Blinken talked extensively about Iran amid growing speculation that the Biden administration is closing in on an interim agreement with Tehran that would see the Islamic Republic freeze its enrichment of uranium in exchange for some sanctions relief from the US.
Netanyahu reiterated his position that Iran will not stop advancing its nuclear program, even if it agrees to revive the nuclear deal with the US, his office says he told Blinken. “No deal with Iran will oblige Israel, which will do everything to defend itself.”
A readout from the US was not immediately available.