India Reactivates $525 Million Missile Deal With Israel Ahead of Netanyahu Visit

14 January, 2018, 00:35 | Author: Diane Mills
  • The Indian government is discussing ways to revive a $500 million order to buy Israel missiles

India last month voted for a resolution at the UN General Assembly opposing US President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

Israeli ambassador to India Daniel Carmon has termed it a historic visit, which will strengthen the growing partnership between the two countries. The Israeli envoy's statement indicates that Israel may have expected some reciprocity in diplomatic support from India when it came to the United Nations resolution on Jerusalem. We always want the global community to vote for us. India, on the other hand, sees Iran as a strategic partner in establishing logistical links to Afghanistan, Central Asia and Russian Federation through the Chabahar port, being developed with active Indian participation.

According to a statement issued by Israeli embassy, Mr Netanyahu will arrive in New Delhi on Jan 14 and depart from Mumbai on Jan 19.

India is considering purchase of Spike anti-tank guided missiles (ATGMs) from Israel through the government-to-government (G-to-G) route, months after it made a decision to cancel a deal to procure the weapons from an Israeli firm.

During his terms in office as prime minister - in 1996-1999 and from 2009 till now - Netanyahu has visited Russian Federation 12 times.

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Kabir Taneja, an associate fellow at the Observer Research Foundation (ORF), a New Delhi-based think tank, pointed out that Mr Netanyahu's five-day trip was "a long time for any state visit". The Israeli leader would be meeting External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj also the same day. The two leaders will also be witnessing several innovative technologies in the field of water, agriculture and health at iCreate and visit a Centre of Excellence.

A road show in Gujarat, visit to Agra, a meet-up with Bollywood stars, reviving defence deals, and a much anticipated gift by PM Netanyahu for PM Narendra Modi are the talking points of the visit so far.

On Thursday, Netanyahu will have a power Breakfast with Indian CEOs and attend a business seminar.

During the annual press conference with foreign press, Netanyahu said, "The Palestinian president [Mahmoud Abbas] is the one who is obstructing the peace process, as he is refusing to return to the negotiation table".

Israel's Saare Tzedek hospital would be signing an agreement with India's ministry of health and family welfare as well.

In 2018, Israeli arms manufacturing firm Rafael confirmed scrapping of $500 million Spike, anti-tank guided missile, deal between India and Israel. Israel Aerospace Industries Ltd. won almost $2 billion in contracts from India previous year alone.



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