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Israel, India defense ministers agree to increase military cooperation

Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz meets his Indian counterpart, Rajnath Singh in India, June 2, 2022 (Photo: Virender Singh)

Israel and India have committed to further developing defense cooperation between their countries, according to the Israeli Defense Ministry.

Defense Minister Benny Gantz met with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Defense Minister Rajnath Singh in India on Thursday and and decided that they would explore more ways to work together and harness both Israel’s technological advancements and operational experience and India’s development and production capabilities. 

“India is an industrial superpower and Israel is a technological superpower – cooperation between our countries will expand the capabilities of both countries to contend with developing challenges,” Gantz told Modi during an afternoon meeting.

The goals for the cooperation are in line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “Make in India” vision.

Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz meets Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, June 2, 2022 (Photo: Indian Prime Minister’s Office)

This was Gantz’s first visit to the country in his current role. It comes on the heels of a recently signed agreement between Israel’s Directorate for Defense R&D and the Indian Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO).

Gantz and Singh presented a joint declaration marking 30 years of Israel-India relations and reiterated their commitment to deepening defense ties, the Defense Ministry said.

Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz and Indian Defense Minister Rajnath Singh, June 2, 2022 (Photo: Virender Singh)

“India and Israel share similar and common challenges, including border security and fighting terrorism,” Gantz told his Indian counterpart. “By working together, we may increase our capabilities and ensure the security and economic interests of both countries.”

Among the topics covered during the meeting of the defense ministers: strategic global challenges, military cooperation, defense industrial cooperation, joint R&D and opportunities for collaborative military and technological training with a focus on UAVs. 

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett was supposed to visit India earlier this year, but he had to delay his trip because he contracted COVID-19. He and Modi met in November 2021 on the sidelines of the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow.

Maayan Hoffman is a veteran American-Israeli journalist and strategic communications consultant. She is Deputy CEO - Strategy & Innovation for the Jerusalem Post, where she also served as news editor, head of strategy and senior health analyst.

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