About 200 ‘Occupy AIPAC’ demonstrators have staged an anti-Iran war demonstration near the White House during a meeting between US President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Carrying papier-mache figures of Obama and Netanyahu, the protesters gathered in the Lafayette Park, across from the White House, on Monday to voice their opposition to a war on Iran.

The demonstrators also demanded justice for Palestinians and called for an end to Israel’s expansion of the illegal settlements in the West Bank.

"Netanyahu is a war criminal responsible for the deaths of hundreds of Palestinians and the oppression of the entire population," said Alli McCracken, one of the protest organizers and a member of Code Pink, a women-led anti-war group.

Monday’s rally was co-organized by the Occupy AIPAC, a coalition of about 130 organizations.

AIPAC is short for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, which is a powerful Israeli lobby in the United States.

During his speech at an AIPAC conference on Sunday, Obama said he would use all “American power” to force Iran into abandoning its nuclear energy program.

He said that the US plans to “use all elements of American power to pressure Iran and prevent it from acquiring a nuclear weapon” as a “nuclear-armed Iran is completely counter to Israel’s security interests.”

The threats by the American president came despite a February 24 Los Angeles Times story which said, according to a “highly classified” report that “represented the consensus of 16 US intelligence agencies,” Tehran is not seeking to build nuclear weapons.

In addition, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has during its numerous inspections never found any evidence of diversion in Iran’s nuclear energy program.

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News ID 181568