Israel's ex-leader slams Netanyahu over U.S.

Dec 02, 2013, 2:03 AM EST
Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert speaks at the McCain Institute for International Leadership in Washington, D.C., June 5, 2013.
AFP/Getty Images

TEL AVIV, Israel (AP) — Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert says his successor has severely damaged the country's relations with the United States.

Speaking before a security conference, Olmert said Sunday that Benjamin Netanyahu's public criticism of the American-led nuclear deal with Iran was provocative and counterproductive. He said he too would differ with the American president, but always made sure to do so in private.

In an apparent response, Netanyahu responded that in contrast to others when it came to the vital security of Israel's citizens "I will not be silent."

Netanyahu has called the interim deal with Iran a "historic mistake" and declared Israel not bound by the agreement.

Netanyahu believes Iran is determined to produce a nuclear bomb and offering it relief from sanctions at this time amounts to appeasement.