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. Israeli official disappointed with Obama stance on Iran
JERUSALEM, June 4 (AFP) Jun 04, 2009
A senior Israeli official expressed disappointment with the position taken by US President Barack Obama on Iran's nuclear programme in a keynote speech in Cairo on Thursday.

"There was an expectation in Jerusalem that the president would repeat his previous clear expressions on the issue, including those made in Washington after his meeting with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu," said the official, who asked not to be identified.

Obama said in his address at Cairo University that the nuclear showdown with Iran had reached a decisive point.

But the US leader surprised some Israeli officials by saying that Iran had the right to peaceful nuclear power if it abided by international treaties.

Israeli leaders were encouraged when Obama said after his meeting with Netanyahu in the White House on May 18 that Washington would review its dialogue with Tehran about its nuclear programme by the end of the year.

The hawkish premier said Israel maintained its right of self-defence against Iran, which it suspects of seeking to obtain an atomic bomb under cover of its civilian nuclear programme. Tehran denies the charge.

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