By JONATHAN ALLEN |
11/24/13 4:50 PM EST
President Barack Obama called Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday, just hours after the Israeli leader harshly criticized an American-backed deal that would temporarily ease certain sanctions on Iran in exchange for a six-month freeze in that nation's nuclear program.
Netanyahu had called the agreement, struck early Sunday morning in Geneva, a "historic mistake," a position that gained support from some pro-Israel lawmakers in both parties on Capitol Hill. White House officials presented the Obama-Netanyahu conversation in a positive light in a readout sent to reporters Sunday afternoon.
"The two leaders reaffirmed their shared goal of preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon," the White House said. "Consistent with our commitment to consult closely with our Israeli friends, the President told the Prime Minister that he wants the United States and Israel to begin consultations immediately regarding our efforts to negotiate a comprehensive solution. The President underscored that the United States will remain firm in our commitment to Israel, which has good reason to be skeptical about Iran’s intentions."