"Together with our Israeli friends, we are determined to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. And we are testing whether it is possible through diplomacy to achieve that goal, understanding that we have to remain vigilant," Obama said at a White House Hanukkah reception on Thursday.

"For the first time in a decade, we have halted the progress of Iran's nuclear programme. And key parts of the programme will be rolled back, even though the toughest of our sanctions remain in place," Obama said.

"And that's good for the world and that's good for Israel. Over the coming months, we are going to continue our diplomacy with the goal of achieving a comprehensive solution that deals with the threat of Iran's nuclear weapons once and for all," he said.

"And through it all, as always, our commitment to Israel and its security will remain iron clad and unshakable," Obama said.
    
The United States, he said, continue to stand up for its values around the world. "That's why we stand alongside and partner with those allies who share those values, including the State of Israel," he said.
    
Iran last month struck a historic deal with world powers to curb its nuclear programme in return for some sanctions relief, a breakthrough hailed as the most significant and tangible progress made between the Islamic state and the West on the contentious issue.

(Agencies)

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