JERUSALEM, March 18 (Reuters) – Israel on Friday urged the United States not to remove Iran‘s Revolutionary Guards from its foreign terrorist organization blacklist in exchange for “empty promises”.
The United States was considering such a move, a source familiar with the matter said on Wednesday, in return for Iranian assurances about reining in the elite force and comes amid efforts to revive a 2015 deal under which Iran limited its nuclear program in return for relief from sanctions. Read full story
Israel’s prime minister and foreign minister said in a joint statement they “believe that the United States will not abandon its closest allies in exchange for empty promises from terrorists”.
“The Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) is a terrorist organization that has murdered thousands of people, including Americans. We refuse to believe that the United States would remove its designation as a terrorist organization,” they said.
The IRGC is a powerful faction in Iran that controls a business empire as well as elite armed and intelligence forces that Washington accuses of carrying out a global terrorist campaign.
Multiple sources have said dropping the terrorist designation is one of the last, and most vexing, issues in wider indirect talks on reviving the 2015 nuclear deal.
(Reporting by Ari Rabinovitch; Editing by Nick Macfie)