India, Israel to intensify defence, anti-terror cooperation
Reflecting their growing proximity, India and Israel on Tuesday decided to further “broad-base” their already close defence partnership and intensify cooperation in combating radicalisation and extremism, while calling upon global community to act tough against terror networks and States harbouring them.
The two countries also agreed to deepen their cooperation in a variety of areas including trade and investment, agriculture, water resources and cyber crime during extensive talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Israeli President Reuven Rivlin, who is on his first visit to India.
Giving gist of his talks with the Israeli leader, Modi, in a media statement, said people of both countries were constantly threatened by forces of terrorism and extremism and both sides agreed to intensify cooperation in combating them effectively, particularly having “practical and specific” engagement such as in the cyber domain.
“We recognize that terrorism is a global challenge, knows no boundaries and has extensive links with other forms of organized crime,” he said.
In an obvious reference to Pakistan, the Prime Minister said, “Regrettably, one of the countries of its origin and spread is in India’s neighbourhood. “We agreed that the international community must act with resolve and determination against terror networks and States that harbour them. Failure to act and silence of speech only encourages the terrorists,” he said.
Noting that Rivlin’s visit has given a “crucial push” to efforts to build new pillars in bilateral ties, Modi said both sides noted the strength of the growing defence partnership and agreed on the need to make it “more broad-based” through production and manufacturing partnerships.
India is Israel’s largest buyer of military hardware and the latter has been supplying various weapons systems, missiles and unmanned aerial vehicles over the last few years but the transactions have largely remained behind the curtains.