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Netanyahu likens Iran to Nazis in Holocaust remembrance speech

In a speech marking the country's Holocaust remembrance, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu compared Iran to the Nazi regime. He also accused the international community of repeating mistakes made before World War II.

Speaking at the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial on Wednesday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu compared the policies of the Islamic Republic of Iran to Adolf Hitler's Nazi regime that ruled Germany from 1933 until its World War II defeat in 1945.

"As the Nazis strived to trample civilization and replace it with a 'master race' while destroying the Jewish people, so is Iran striving to take over the region and expand further with a declared goal of destroying the Jewish state," he said.

Opposition to nuclear agreement

Netanyahu also took the opportunity to reiterate his opposition to a framework agreement reached between the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany (P5+1) with Iran, designed to curb the Islamic Republic's nuclear program so that it will not be able to use it for military purposes.

"Instead of demanding Iran significantly dismantle its nuclear capabilities and conditioning lifting sanctions on it ending its aggressions, the world powers are retreating, leaving Iran with nuclear capabilities and even allowing it to expand them later on regardless to its actions in the Middle East and around the world," he said.

"Has the world really learned from the incomprehensible universal and Jewish tragedy of the previous century," he asked, referring to the Holocaust, in which some 6 million Jews were killed by the Nazis.

"The powers turn a deaf ear to the crowds in Iran shouting 'Death to America; death to Israel,'" he added. "The democratic governments made a momentous mistake before World War Two and we, along with many of our neighbors, are convinced that a bitter mistake has also been made now."

Netanyahu has repeatedly railed against the framework nuclear agreement between the P5+1 group and Iran, which is meant to be finalized by June 30, leading to a lifting of longstanding economic sanctions on Tehran.

His latest comments came just hours before Israel came to a standstill on Thursday, with sirens wailing for tow minutes to mark the anniversary of the liberation of Nazi concentration camps 70 years ago.

pfd/sms (AP, AFP)

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