Israel's Netanyahu: Iran Nuclear Deal Could Be 'Historic Mistake'

ABC News' George Stephanopoulos speaks with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu about the Iran nuclear talks and the recent attack in a Jerusalem synagogue.
4:52 | 11/23/14

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Transcript for Israel's Netanyahu: Iran Nuclear Deal Could Be 'Historic Mistake'
We are joined now by the Israeli prime minister, Benjamin netanyahu. Mr. Prime minister, thank you for joining us this morning. I know you've been in contact with secretary Kerry through the weekend. Do you think there will be a deal? I don't know, but I think it's important that there won't be a bad deal. A bad deal would enable Iran to remain with thousands of centrifuges, which it could use to enrich uranium, which is what you need for a nuclear bomb. It could do so in a very short time. I think the key principle is this, don't dismantle sanctions before you dismantle Iran's capacity to make a nuclear bomb, and as I understand it, the Iranians are nowhere near to accepting that, and if for any reason the United States and the other powers agree to leave Iran with that capacity to break out, I think that would be a historic mistake, not only because it endangers my country, Israel, that Iran's ruler, the ayatollah khomeini vows to annihilate but also because I think it would endanger the entire middle east and the world. So what others do very have if that is reached? First of all, we're doing everything we can to influence people not to make a bad deal and, of course, such a deal is something that would leave Iran with a capacity to threaten everyone. You know, they're developing icbms, intercontinental ballistic missiles. Why in heaven's name do they need intercontinental ballistic missiles? They need it to reach Europe and the United States. Do you agree with president Obama that this interim deal has been a success and, therefore, if you can't get a big deal over this weekend, would you go along with extending the current terms? Look, I think the Iranians have used the interim deal to develop other elements of their program. It's true that they haven't raised the enrichment to the 20% level and beyond, but they have done other things, and they're doing things that we don't know about. In fact, the iaea, the international atomic energy agency says that Iran refuse to divulge the elements of its secret military nuclear program. So I think Iran has been using -- using the hiatus to improve its economy, its economy has improved, inflation has gone down substantially. There have been cash infusions of billions of dollars into the Iranian economy, but they still are suffering under sanctions. I would, in fact, rather than making a bad deal, I would just continue the sanctions regime even toughen the sanctions regime and get Iran to make the concessions it needs to make to make sure that they don't have the capacity to make nuclear weapons. Mr. Prime minister, we all saw that horrific murder in the Jerusalem synagogue this week. Is Israel facing a new kind of intefadeh? I hope not, but you can't rule it out. I mean, what we're seeing is that the radical islamist fires that are sweeping everywhere in the middle east are also coming to Israel, and, in fact, this incitement is what has caused a lot of these murderous attacks on Jews where people are mowed down by cars or stabbed or hatcheted to death in a synagogue. In fact, there's been incitement that says that Israel absolutely falsely coming from islamist forces and also from hamas, from Isis and from regrettably from the Blinn authority saying that Israel is about to change the prayer arrangements on the temple mount. That's absolutely false. It's hogwash, but, you know, these people are incited by this. They then proceed to carry out their savage murders, and we have two weapons to fight this. One is we do whatever we can to defend ourselves and to strike at the killers, it's hard because many of them are suicide killers, and the second thing is to stop the incitement, to fight the incitement including the incitement that comes from the Palestinian authority. That has to stop. But does bulldozing houses work? Well, it's one of the things that we're seeking. We're trying to find a way to stop, to deter future suicides. As suicides by their nature, they don't particularly care if they die, but they care if in some cases and often in many cases if their homes are demolished afterwards or sealed. That we've seen in some cases. We're looking at other means, as well, but just imagine what the American public would say if you had day in and day out these terrorist murders coming in, blowing up people, knifing people, driving -- running down people with cars, you'd want to look for the ways that are effective to deter such future attacks, both to protect people in realtime, but also to defer future suicides and home demolitions is one of those means. Mr. Prime minister, thanks very much for your time this morning.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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