The threat of a nuclear armed Iran is even more significant now that the nuclear agreement with the West is in place, incoming Mossad chief Yossi Cohen said on Wednesday.
Speaking at a swearing-in ceremony at Mossad headquarters, Cohen warned, “A major challenge is the Iranian threat which, despite the nuclear deal – and I think because of it – has become more significant.”
Iran, he said in excerpts of his speech quoted by Walla!, “continues to call for Israel’s destruction, intensifies its military capabilities and strengthens its hold on the region. Its terrorist affiliates are the means to achieve these goals. ”
In addition, said Cohen, “The State of Israel lies at the center of the storm affecting the Middle East in recent years. The fanaticism of radical Islam is taking over countries and causing them to collapse. The inter-religious war within Islam and the strengthening of terror organizations around us require the Mossad to study the threats in depth and stop them.”
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu also spoke at the ceremony, wished Cohen success in his new post and expressed confidence that he will be able to “move the Mossad forward. The responsibility that comes with the role of head of the Mossad is immense, but it is in essence the story of our people through the ages. I trust you, Yossi, as do all the citizens of Israel. Good luck.”
Outgoing Mossad chief Tamir Pardo attended the ceremony as well and said, “Yossi, my ceiling is your floor. You started like me, at the bottom of the order, and worked your way up to the position of deputy head of the Mossad and head of operations. Moreover, you served for two and half years as head of the National Security Council. You have all that it takes to lead the Mossad to new realms, to raise the bar and adapt to the new reality that is taking shape before our eyes.”