The UN atomic watchdog is asking for international input on an Arab-led push to have Israel join the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, a move that adds to pressure on the Jewish state to disclose its unacknowledged nuclear arsenal.
Israel, in turn, is suggesting efforts should focus instead on giving teeth to the nuclear treaty to prevent signatories like Iran from acquiring such weapons.
On Wednesday, The Associated Press disclosed that International Atomic Energy Agency chief Yukiya Amano had sent a letter soliciting proposals from the agency's 151 member states on how to persuade Israel to sign the treaty.
And the world's five recognized nuclear-weapons powers — the U.S., Russia, Britain, France and China — affirmed the goal of a nuclear-free Middle East.
A string of Israeli officials, including a spokesman for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the minister of atomic energy, the deputy minister of foreign affairs, the minister of strategic threats and the minister of communication, all refused to comment on the recent developments.
The latest pressure is putting Israel in an uncomfortable position. It wants the international community to take stern action to prevent Iran from getting atomic weapons, while it brushes off calls to come clean about its own nuclear capabilities.