Strengthening cooperation in key areas of trade and defence, including a possible inking of a multi-million dollar Israeli anti-tank missiles deal, is on the table during the visit of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu from Sunday, with its envoy today terming Indo-Israel ties as irreversible. Israeli Ambassador to India Daniel Carmon also downplayed India’s stand at the United Nations General Assembly over the US decision to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel in place of Tel Aviv, saying New Delhi’s view “cannot influence” Indo-Israel ties. India, last month, had joined 127 other countries to vote in the United Nations General Assembly in favour of a resolution opposing the recent decision of US President Donald Trump to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
Netanyahu will be on a six-day visit to India starting Sunday, during which he will hold comprehensive talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi. During his stay, he will also visit Gujarat and Mumbai. Without going into the contours of a possible agreement for Israeli Spike missiles, Carmon said the Spike project is an example of “Israeli engaging in Make in India” because it can be implemented through partnership between an Israeli company and Indian company.
In November, the defence ministry had decided to retract the process to acquire a batch of Spike missiles from Israeli firm Rafael Advanced Defence Systems. Now, it is learnt that the government is considering buying the missiles through G-to-G route. Carmon said apart from top Israeli officials, a delegation of 130 businessmen will accompany Netanyahu during his visit.