Netanyahu to Meet Trump, Putin, Modi in Coming Weeks
Netanyahu to Meet Trump, Putin, Modi in Coming Weeks
India says $500 million missile deal with Israel will move ahead
14 January, 2018, 00:35
In the run-up to the state visit of IsraeliPrime MinisterBenjamin Netanyahu to India from January 14 to 19, Israel on Thursday said it will invest $68.6 million (Rs 435 crore) to boost cooperation with India in areas like tourism, technology, agriculture and innovation over a period of four years.
The deal's reported reactivation comes ahead of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's trip to India next week. It will be the second visit by an Israeli prime minister to India, and comes 15 years after Ariel Sharon visited New Delhi in 2003.
The Israeli envoy however evaded a direct question on whether Israel had approached India for support ahead of the United Nations vote. The prime minister went on to say, "I don't think the vote materially changes the recent flowering of relations between Israel and India, and everybody can see that".
A media highlight of that visit was a barefoot stroll though the surf together at an Israeli beach, where Modi got a demonstration of a mobile water desalination unit mounted on a dune buggy. Carmon said the Spike project was an example of "Israeli engaging in Make in India" because it can be implemented through partnership between an Israeli company and Indian company. PM Netanyahu will travel with a full component of the Shin Bet, Israel's internal security agency, and members of Yamas, Israel's undercover special counter-terrorism unit.
PM Modi would be accompanying Netanyahu to Gujarat on Wednesday where he will be welcomed with a roadshow in Ahmadabad.
It will also highlight the countries' shared interest to fight extremism with the prime minister's visit to Mumbai to commemorate the November 2008 attacks. They had spent time at the Sabarmati riverfront, with PM Modi playing the tour guide to Shinzo Abe and his wife. Netanyahu not only received Modi at the airport in July, PM Modi was accorded the kind of welcome by every religious sect that is reserved for popes and U.S. presidents, officials had said then.
Mr Modi also took the unusual step of not visiting Palestine during his trip - a side visit that has otherwise become the norm for leaders going to Israel.
However, the Ministry of External Affairs here did not confirm any such news and said that exchanging of gifts is a common practice on such occasions and whether the leaders choose to do it in public view is a different matter.
To try and drive home the point that it did not wish to be a mere buyer but wanted to attract manufacturing investments, India first cancelled and then said a $500-million deal to buy 8,000 Israeli Spike anti-tank missiles could be revived.
India's defence ministry announced last week that it would buy 131 surface-to-air missiles from Israel.
The first stop for PM Modi and Netanyahu will be at the Teen Murti monument where the two leaders will lay a wreath at the monument, commemorating the role of three Indian regiments who fought at the battle of Haifa over a century ago, and today, is an occasion to celebrate the closeness between the two countries. India-Israel bilateral trade has crossed $5 billion and India's acquisition of Israeli defence products is valued at over $1 billion annually.
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