Israel’s former ambassador to the United Nations Danny Danon offered insight Sunday into what a Biden presidency could mean for the Middle East, and urged President-elect Joe Biden to “continue the momentum” created by President Trump’s peace initiatives in the region.
“I hope the President-elect will continue with the momentum because it’s good not only for Israel or the modern Arab countries, it is good for the U.S.,” he told Fox News host Eric Shawn.
Danon praised Trump for moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem, pulling the U.S. out of the Iran nuclear deal, and brokering the Abraham Accords which normalizes relations between Israel and four Arab states — United United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Sudan, and Morocco.
“I flew to Dubai a few years ago and it was a very sensitive visit. Today, you have 14 flights a week from Tel Aviv to Dubai so we see the fruits of peace already,” he said, “and we are excited about it.”
Danon, now the chairman of World Likud, a political party in Israel, said he hopes the new administration will continue with Trump’s approach to the Iran nuclear deal and will not re-enter into the agreement.
Trump announced that he would be pulling the U.S. out of the Obama-brokered deal — also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in 2018, calling the agreement “defective at its core.”
Biden however has expressed plans to rejoin the agreement if Iran returns to strict compliance with the nuclear deal.
“First of all, we have to look at the facts and the facts are the deal is a bad deal…the Iranians ignored it, we saw what they did in the last five years and everything we learned about everything is happening today,” Danon said.
He advises the Biden foreign policy team “not to listen to the Iranians, to apply more sanctions and not to try to appease them.
“When you try to appease them, they take advantage of it,” he argued, “and I think it will be bad for the U.S. to play that game.
Instead, Danon said he would “recommend [to] the new administration to apply more pressure, to work with the allies in the region, and if the Iranians would be willing to change the agreement which I doubt it, you can speak about it,” he explained.
“But you don’t run immediately and hug them and give them what they want.”