U.S., Israeli Officials Consulting on Iran

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -

President Barack Obama’s national security adviser, Susan Rice, played host to a series of meetings with Israeli officials last week to try to gain their support for an interim deal with Iran aimed at containing Tehran’s nuclear program.

The meetings, announced in a White House statement on Sunday, arose from talks between President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu last month as the United States tried to persuade a skeptical Israel to support the Iran deal.

Rice, along with her deputy Tony Blinken and senior officials from the departments of State and Treasury, met with Israeli national security adviser Yossi Cohen and other Israeli officials on Thursday and Friday.

“During the meetings, the U.S. team reaffirmed President Obama’s goal of preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon,” the White House said.

The series of meetings was an initial step toward fulfilling a promise Obama made to Netanyahu in their Nov. 24 phone call that the United States would consult regarding the effort to forge a comprehensive solution with Iran.