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Rouhani: 'Nuclear Israel is the Greatest Threat to World Peace'

By, the Jerusalem Post, Reuters & Iranian President Hassan Rouhani criticized the United States' decision to reinstate sanctions against Iran in his speech at the UN General Assembly in New York on Tuesday evening. "The US is pushing some countries to withdraw from the nuclear agreement and threatening others with punishment if they trade with us. This is the first time in the history of the UN that an open invitation to violate international law is backed by sanctions and punishments. This is the Americans' model," Rouhani said. "The US understands nothing but force and bullying. There is no country that can come to the negotiating table by force. In the end there is no better way than dialogue. In dialogue, there are two sides which base themselves on respect and justice, and of course respect for international agreements." The president of Iran attacked Israel for what he called the "crimes of occupation" and added, "Israel, equipped with nuclear weapons, constitutes the greatest threat to peace and stability in the region and in the world. Israel, which has a nuclear arsenal is blatantly threatening others with nuclear annihilation. "The countless crimes by Israel against the Palestinians would not have been able to take place without assistance and support from the US," Rouhani said in his speech to the United Nations General Assembly, adding that the passage of the years cannot justify what he described as the "continued occupation." Rouhani further emphasized that the US decision to transfer its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem was a flagrant example of Washington undermining regional peace. He also slammed Israel's recent passage of the Nation-State Law was another clear example of the country being an apartheid state. Rouhani expressed Iran's willingness to improve ties with the regional countries. Sunni Muslim Saudi Arabia has been at loggerheads with Shi'ite Iran for decades, fighting a long-running proxy war in the Middle East and beyond that has influenced conflicts in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen. "We believe in the formation of a collective mechanism for the Persian Gulf region with the presence and participation of all regional countries," he said. Rouhani accused the Trump administration of having a "Nazi disposition" within minutes of opening his remarks, later stating: "The United States understanding of international relations is authoritarian. No state or nation can be brought to the negotiating table by force," Rouhani said, using the majority of his time at the UN podium criticizing his American counterpart. Earlier in the day, President Trump characterized the Iranian government as a cancer on the Middle East. "Iran's leaders sow chaos, death, and destruction," Trump said. They do not respect their neighbors or borders, or the sovereign rights of nations. Instead, Iran's leaders plunder the nation's resources to enrich themselves and to spread mayhem across the Middle East and far beyond.

Former Israeli Prime Minister Barak Appointed as Chairman of Cannabis Firm


Former Israeli prime minister Ehud Barak was appointed chairman of Israeli medical cannabis company InterCure, Ltd., the company announced Tuesday. Tel Aviv-traded Intercure's stock was up as much as 26.82% on Tuesday following the announcement. Barak is set to lead Intercure's global expansion strategy and will earn $10,000 for 40 hours per month, the company said. Barak will also receive stock options convertible into 5% of Intercure stock. Earlier this month, Intercure, which functions as a holding company, acquired Israeli cannabis cultivator Canndoc Ltd. for an undisclosed amount. Canndoc is licensed in Israel to produce and market medical cannabis and its products, which adhere to strict international standards, may be sold in pharmacies. Intercure said Tuesday it is in the process of changing its name to Canndoc Pharma. Intercure also holds a 17.25% stake in Israel-based clinical stage company Regenera Pharma Ltd., which develops drugs for a wide range of neurological conditions, with a focus on degenerative diseases. In January, Regenera received a $20 million investment from Marius Nacht, co-founder of information security company Check Point Software Technologies Ltd. Intercure also holds a 9% stake in Jerusalem-based NovellusDx Ltd., which develops biological cancer treatments.

High Speed Jerusalem-Tel Aviv Rail Opens to the Public


Israelis climbed aboard the country's new high-speed train on Tuesday as it partially opened to whisk passengers from Jerusalem to Ben Gurion airport, a massive project years in the making. A smattering of passengers descended into the new station 260 feet underground in central Jerusalem for the first train at 6:32 am, and some of them weren't actually travelling anywhere. They included Richard Elkaim, who boarded the red double-decker carriages with his wife and three of his grandchildren to test out the new line -- then ride back home to Jerusalem. He and his wife pulled out their mobile phones to record their grandchildren -- 11, 7 and 6 -- as the train left a tunnel to follow an elevated route through the steep hills and valleys surrounding Jerusalem. "It's because we have waited for years, this network for more than 10 years," said the 71-year-old retired doctor originally from France. "For everyone who works, for all Israelis proud of their country, it's incredible." The train will eventually connect Jerusalem to the commercial capital Tel Aviv with a high-speed link that will take only 28 minutes. It is capable of travelling at 100 miles per hour. In normal traffic, it can take around double the amount of time to drive, but congestion in the Tel Aviv area can be maddening and lead to longer commutes. For now, the train is only running as far as Ben Gurion airport from Jerusalem, with the link onward to Tel Aviv not yet complete. No timetable has been set for when that will open. It is running as a pilot program for the first three months at no charge to passengers, though they must first reserve a voucher online for the 21-minute trip. Only 400 passengers are allowed to board each train for now compared to around three times that when it begins full operations. Israel also wants to extend the line to include a Western Wall station. For Israelis, the project is a realization of a longer-term vision to connect the country by high-speed rail. The route includes 25 miles of tunnels and eight bridges.

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