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Biden tells Netanyahu US will not participate in counterattack on Iran

Biden tells Netanyahu US will not participate in counterattack on Iran

 


CNN-

President Joe Biden and top officials of his national security team, seeking to contain the risk of a broader regional war following a barrage of Iranian missiles and drones aimed at Israel, told their counterparts that the United States United would not participate in any offensive action against Iran. according to American officials familiar with the matter.

In a conversation with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Saturday evening, Biden sought to present Israel's successful interception of the Iranian attack as a major victory, suggesting that a further Israeli response was unnecessary.

Biden told the Israeli prime minister in his phone call that he should consider Saturday a victory because the Iranian attacks were largely unsuccessful and demonstrated Israel's superior military capability, a senior administration official said.

John Kirby, White House national security spokesman, said Sunday that the ability to prevent widespread damage was a demonstration of Israel's military superiority and proof that Iran was not the power military they claim to be.

It was an incredible success, really proving Israel's military superiority and, just as critically, its diplomatic superiority, the fact that they have friends in the region and around the world who are ready to help them, Kirby said to Jake Tapper on CNN about the State of the Union.

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin asked his Israeli counterpart, Minister Yoav Gallant, to brief the United States ahead of any potential response to the Iranian attack, according to another U.S. official.

Even as U.S. officials have emphasized to their counterparts that the final decision on how to respond to Iran rests with Israel, Biden has sought to prevent a broader escalation of the conflict.

On Sunday, he planned to convene a meeting of Group of Seven leaders to discuss a united diplomatic response with an emphasis on nonmilitary actions that would limit the prospects of a broader war.

I told him that Israel had demonstrated a remarkable ability to defend itself and defeat even unprecedented attacks, sending a clear message to its enemies that they could not effectively threaten Israel's security, Biden said in a statement following his conversation with Netanyahu.

Whether Netanyahu will follow Biden's advice remains an open question. The Iranian retaliation comes at a time of deep human tension over the war in Gaza. Throughout this conflict, the limits of American influence over Israeli decision-making have been laid bare.

Iran's decision to fire weapons from its own territory towards Israel significantly deepens the long-simmering enmity between the two countries. There will likely be political pressure from Israel for a response.

Kirby said the first attack launched from Iranian soil against Israel should not necessarily be the start of a broader regional war.

We don't think that's the case and we don't think it should be, he told Tapper, noting that the United States and Israel both have a good idea of ​​what Iran planned to make in advance.

Gallant warned Sunday that the confrontation with Iran is not yet over. The country's response options are expected to be discussed in detail at a meeting of Israel's war cabinet.

The commander of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, Hossein Salami, warned that Tehran would respond directly if Israel retaliated, saying a new equation had been created.

This story and headline have been updated with additional reporting.

CNN's Catherine Nicholls and Tamar Michaelis contributed reporting.

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