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Israeli National Infrastructure Minister Benjamin Ben-Eliezer.
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 July 09, 2008  22:49 
If israel believes in God, they cant comment like this. This universe is God's creation. Let the God ... >>
June 25, 2008
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Iran Will Be Destroyed
// Israels Minister of National Infrastructure dwells on the situation in the region
Yesterday Israeli National Infrastructure Minister Benjamin Ben-Eliezer finished his visit to Moscow. Before his departure, Mr Ben-Eliezer told Kommersant correspondent Alexander Reutov about the prospects of Russian gas supplies to Israel, Irans chances to survive, and the prospects of settling the crisis in Israel.
Have your talks with Gazprom brought concrete results?

Were conducting negotiations about a framework agreement providing for gas supplies to Israel within the next 20 or 30 years. Now were at the final stage of the agreements preparation. Hopefully well sign it within the next months and get down to concrete work.

How much gas are you going to purchase?

At the first stage were planning to buy 4 bln cubic meters. Israel is not going to use natural gas at power stations only. Well use it in industry as well. So, as demand grows, well boost supplies to 8-10 bln cubic meters.

The project envisages quite a costly construction of a gas pipeline from Turkey to Israel at the bottom of the Mediterranean sea. Wholl build it?

There is no agreement yet. There are several variants so far, and they are now studied. Well take a decision in the near future.

Can a war with Iran impede this project? Western mass media claim that Israel is going to attack the Islamic republic and it has even held exercises.

Were not planning any assault on Iran. But wed like the entire world to see the crucial difference between civilized states possessing nuclear weapons and a situation when this weapon falls in the hands of marginal regimes. Now Iran challenges Israel only threatening to wipe us off the face of the earth. However, its Muslim states thatll suffer most from Teherans nuclear weapons. The whole Persian Gulf region, Egypt, Jordan, even Northern Africa, the countries of the Indian ocean and Europe are in danger. To avert a catastrophe, the world must make concrete steps before its not too late. But you can be sure: If Teheran attempts to attack Israel, Iran will be destroyed.

For all that, you assume that you can find consensus with the incumbent Iranian government?

Yes, if the world abandons double standards when on the one hand, the UN Security Council adopts its resolutions and imposes sanctions on Iran, and on the other hand, thousands European enterprises keep on trading with Iran.

You mean Russian companies?

No. I think that Russia and Israel are conducting a good dialogue. And we see that the Russian party understands our problems and concerns.

Now the political situation in Israel is quite complicated. The Avoda leader, a party you belong to, urged that Prime Minister Olmert, whos accused of corruption, should resign. The PM refused to do it. Why wont Avoda and you personally leave the government which society doesnt trust?

In my view, Israel has the right to governmental stability. On Wednesday Ill take part in voting in the Knesset. And unless there is no other way out, Ill vote for the Knessets dissolution as Avoda member.

Avoda has already decided to support the dissolution.

Israeli politics is very dynamic, much may change. Well vote if there is no other way. In any case, itll be preliminary voting. After all, the law gives us an opportunity to avoid the parliaments dissolution setting up an alternative government.

Which variant would you prefer?

An alternative government.

Will it be a coalition cabinet with the same cluster of parties, without Ehud Olmert only?

Youre on the right way.

Alexander Reutov

All the Article in Russian as of June 25, 2008

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