Israel, India to enhance cooperation

PM-Netanyahu-and-indian-Ext.-Affairs-Min.-Swaraj-e1453122644887-635x357JERUSALEM, Jan. 18 (Xinhua) — Israel and India agreed Monday to intensify cooperation in a broad range of fields including security and cyber, following a meeting between top Indian and Israeli politicians.

“India attaches the highest importance to the full development of wide-ranging ties with Israel,” India’s External Affairs Minister, Sushma Swaraj, told the Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, according to a statement released by Netanyahu’s office.

Swaraj arrived in Israel on Sunday, following a one-day visit to Ramallah, where she met with the Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

She said that bilateral cooperation between Israel and India has developed well in several areas over the past two decades, “but the potential of our relations is much more.”

Netanyahu told her that Israel wanted “maximum cooperation with India, in all areas.”

They agreed to enhance cooperation in security and cyber, science and technology, research and innovation, and agriculture and water, the Israeli Prime Minister’s Office said.

“They also discussed the intention to increase cooperation via the business sector in both countries,” according to the office.

Diplomatic relations between the two countries kicked off in 1951 after India agreed to acknowledge the newly-formed Jewish state.

The relations have deepened over the past year, with several large weapons deals signed in 2015. Today, Israel is India’s second-largest security supplier, according to official Indian figures.