Photo Credit: Amos Ben Gershom / GPO
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the Foreign Ministry

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told Israeli diplomats in his new year address at the Foreign Ministry that the JCPOA nuclear deal with Iran was bad – but it wasn’t “all bad” – “It brought us closer to the Arab world on a scale that we never knew, and one of our goals is that it continues.

“I think that another important thing is, of course, the fact that there is a gradual normalization with leading countries in the Arab world,” he said.

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There was other good news to report this year as well, Netanyahu said, including a suggestion that came up at his meeting Sunday night with Albania’s foreign minister.

“It was suggested that we hold a meeting in Albania of the six western Balkan countries. We have just done this with the three Baltic states. This gives us considerable output in a relatively concentrated effort. Again, I would like to thank you for the help on this issue,” he said.

“These alliances are significant and embrace the world. We need to move them forward even as we fight not just to advance our interests, which are the interests not only of those who cooperate with us but of justice and the truth as well. We have an especially difficult struggle for justice and the truth vis-a-vis the European Union in Brussels,” he noted.

Netanyahu hailed what he called a “flourishing, a diplomatic flourishing” that he said was “unprecedented in the history of Israel.”

He thanked the diplomat for “the great work that goes on here and around the world,” adding, “The world is coming here and we are going to the world.”

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.