A crane is seen next to homes in a Jewish settlement near Jerusalem known to Israelis as Har Homa and to Palestinians as Jabal Abu Ghneim January 3, 2014. REUTERS/Ammar Awad
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Merkel, who did not plan to meet with Palestinian officials on the visit, reiterated that Germany adhered to the EU position on settlements, which under guidelines published in July prohibits financial dealings with settlement-based entities.The progress in talks between world powers and Iran over its controversial nuclear program was also high on the agenda during the German leader's visit.Israel, which views Iran's nuclear drive as its greatest threat, has been highly critical of diplomatic efforts to resolve the dispute by easing sanctions in return for Tehran freezing or scaling back its nuclear activities. Merkel admitted there was "disagreement" with Netanyahu over holding talks with Tehran. Merkel said Germany views Iran as a potential threat not just to Israel, but also to European states.
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