India, Israel discuss counter-terrorism, intelligence sharing, arms delivery

Published 23 December 2009

India and Israel both face Islamic militants and nuclear-armed, or would-be nuclear armed, adversaries; the defense and intelligence cooperation between the two countries has been steadily growing, and is now in the open

India and Israel Tuesday began a meeting of joint defense working group focused on counter-terrorism and intelligence sharing, delivery of weapons and enhancement of cooperation in research and development, reported the Indo-Asian News Service. The group is co-chaired by Indian Defense Secretary Pradeep Kumar and Israeli defense ministry director-general, retired Brig. Gen. Pinchas Buchris, said the report.

Xinhuanet reports that he report quoted a defense official at the meeting as saying that the main focus of the talks was on enhancing the counter-terrorism cooperation based on intelligence sharing especially after the Mumbai terror attacks.

This meeting followed a low-profile visit of Israeli chief of defense staff, Lt. Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi, earlier this month to India, during which he had met the top brass of the Indian armed forces.

India has bought military hardware and software from Israel worth about eight billion U.S. dollars since 1999, making India the biggest buyer of Israeli arms, according to the news service.