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Kerry: Israel At 'Top Of Agenda' In Iran Talks

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (left) and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu address a joint news conference in Jerusalem on December 5.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry says that Israel's security will remain a top priority in talks with Iran on its nuclear program, after an interim deal was signed with world powers.

"I can't emphasize enough that Israel's security in this negotiation is at the top of our agenda," Kerry told reporters after meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem.

Kerry also said that core sanctions against Iran would remain in place, despite the deal.

Netanyahu earlier said that "steps must be taken to prevent a further erosion of sanctions."

Sanctions were eased after the deal struck between Iran and the P5+1 group of world powers in Geneva last month.

Israel strongly objected to the agreement, under which Iran would benefit from limited sanctions relief in exchange for scaling down its nuclear program.

The West suspects Iran is seeking to develop nuclear weapons, an accusation Tehran rejects.

Israel views the possibility of an Iranian nuclear weapon as an existential threat to the Jewish state.

After his talks with Netanyahu, Kerry is scheduled to meet with Palestinian Authority President Mahmud Abbas in the West Bank.

Based on reporting by Reuters and AFP