Washington DC: US Department of State Deputy Spokesperson Marie Harf preferred to keep her reply short and crypt at the daily press briefing here on Thursday when a journalist asked whether or not it would be right to say: “In the future, if it ever comes to pass that the Middle East is declared as a nuclear weapons-free zone, it should include Israel?
Ms. Harf’s short response to this poser was: “I don’t have much more to share for you than this.”
At a broader level, responding to related queries Ms. Harf said the NPT review process is in its final week in New York. There’s no final text on this issue of the Middle East conference. We are working to ensure that a final text meets our interests and those of Israel. Both the United States and Israel support the creation of a Weapons of Mass Destruction-Free Zone in the Middle East. We’re closely working with our Israeli partners to advance our mutual interests, including preserving the NPT. Given there’s no final text, this is something we’re working behind the scenes and don’t have much more to share than that.
Notwithstanding the growing US predicament as Israel is not finding itself comfortable with the UN move for holding a Middle-East Conference to create a Middle East free of nuclear weapons, there is active US participation in behind the scene talks to bring pressure on Israel to join this conference
Within the next 24-hours, a draft statement to back the UN treaty to regulate nuclear technology is likely to be ready in New York city where UN officials have worked through this week in this direction. This inititaive is geared to complete elimination of nuclear weapons.
A draft has also been circulated within the UN for making the Middle-East free of nuclear weapons. Israel wants a consensus among all Middle-East countries for the Middle-East Conference