Swiss-Iranian gas deal roils Israel


Israel complained to the Swiss government about its endorsement of a major gas purchase from Iran.

Swiss Ambassador Walter Haffner was summoned Wednesday to the Foreign Ministry in Jerusalem to receive a formal complaint after Switzerland signed this week to buy Iranian natural gas worth as much as $30 billion.

Swiss Foreign Minister Micheline Calmy-Rey announced the deal in Tehran. Her trip, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement, was “an act unfriendly toward Israel” and threatened to undermine U.S.-led efforts to isolate Iran through economic sanctions.

“Switzerland and the entire international community are aware of the danger posed by Iran,” the statement said. “Israel expects Switzerland to join the international effort in this matter.”

Calmy-Rey, whose government favors negotiations for curbing Iran’s nuclear program, denied that the gas deal violates U.N. Security Council sanctions against Tehran.


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