TOKYO (CBS DC) – Secretary of State John Kerry says the U.S. will negotiate with Iran only if Tehran provides proof that it is not pursuing nuclear weapons, reports the New York Times.

It’s the first time he’s made public comments about Iran since Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned the U.S. to tread lightly with Iranian leaders.

Kerry assured Israel “nothing we do is going to be based on trust. It’s going to be based on steps,” at a news conference in Tokyo.

He added “it would be diplomatic malpractice of the worst order” not to reach out to Iranian president Hassan Rouhani.

Earlier this week, Netanyahu called Iran’s new president a “wolf in sheep’s clothing.”

Kerry’s comments come after Presidents Obama and Rouhani spoke on the phone for 15 minutes,the first time that the leaders of the two nations have spoken since the Islamic revolution in 1979.


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