U.S., Israel discuss Iran, Hezbollah


U.S. and Israeli strategic negotiators focused on the threat from Iran and Hezbollah.

An Israeli team headed by Shaul Mofaz, the Israeli transportation minister, met Thursday with a U.S. team headed by Nicholas Burns, the undersecretary of state.

“The U.S. and Israeli teams discussed Iran’s destabilizing regional impact,” a joint statement said afterwards.

“They shared their latest assessments of Iran’s nuclear program and diplomatic efforts underway to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons. The two governments also discussed the situation in Lebanon, including the need for full implementation of UNSC Resolution 1701,” the Security Council resolution that ended the war Hezbollah launched against Israel in 2006, “and next steps in the international community’s common efforts to prevent the rearming of Hezbollah.”

In a separate statement, Israel said the sides agreed to set up two sub-groups, one focused on rallying support for sanctions against Iran and the other on sharing intelligence on Iran. The Israeli statement said the next talks would take place in January, in Israel.

Prior to the meeting, Mofaz told reporters that arms smuggling into Lebanon was continuing apace, and that Hezbollah was stronger than it was before the 2006 war. He added that Iran had armed its Lebanese proxy with longer-range missiles.

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