Israel Aerospace wins $777 mln India contract for missile defense

Israel is also emerging as one of India’s biggest suppliers of weapons. (File/AFP)
Updated 24 October 2018
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Israel Aerospace wins $777 mln India contract for missile defense

  • The contract is with India’s state-owned Bharat Electronics Ltd. (BEL), which is the main contractor in the project
  • Israel is also emerging as one of India’s biggest suppliers of weapons

TEL AVIV: State-owned Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) has won an additional, $777 million contract to supply LRSAM air and missile defense systems to seven ships in the Indian navy, the company said on Wednesday.
The contract is with India’s state-owned Bharat Electronics Ltd. (BEL), which is the main contractor in the project, IAI said.
The LRSAM, part of the Barak 8 family, is an air and missile defense system used by Israel’s navy as well as India’s navy, air and land forces.
With this deal, sales of the Barak 8 over the past few years total over $6 billion, IAI said.
“IAI’s partnership with India dates many years back and has culminated in joint system development and production,” IAI Chief Executive Officer Nimrod Sheffer said. “India is a major market for IAI and we plan to ... reinforce our positioning in India, also in view of increasing competition.”
Israel’s and India’s leaders have pledged to deepen ties and the countries have been increasing cooperation in fields like agriculture and advanced technologies. Israel is also emerging as one of India’s biggest suppliers of weapons, alongside the United States and long-term partner Russia.
Last year, IAI struck a deal worth almost $2 billion to supply India’s army and navy with missile defense systems. This was followed by a $630 million contract with BEL to supply Barak 8 surface-to-air missile systems for four ships in the Indian navy.
The Barak 8 was developed by IAI in collaboration with Israel’s Defense Ministry, India’s Defense Research and Development Organization, the navies of both countries, Israel’s Rafael and local industries in India and Israel.


Seoul: North Korea withdrew staff from liaison office

Updated 22 March 2019
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Seoul: North Korea withdrew staff from liaison office

  • The second US-North Korea summit in Vietnam collapsed due to disputes over US-led sanctions on the North
  • The South Korean statement calls the North’s decision “regrettable”

SEOUL: North Korea abruptly withdrew its staff from an inter-Korean liaison office in the North on Friday, Seoul officials said.
The development will likely put a damper on ties between the Koreas and complicate global diplomacy on the North’s nuclear weapons program. Last month, the second US-North Korea summit in Vietnam collapsed due to disputes over US-led sanctions on the North.
Seoul’s Unification Ministry said that North Korea informed South Korea of its decision during a meeting at the liaison office at the North Korean border town of Kaesong on Friday.
The North said it “is pulling out with instructions from the superior authority,” according to a Unification Ministry statement. It didn’t say whether North Korea’s withdrawal of staff would be temporary or permanent.
According to the South Korean statement, the North added that it “will not mind the South remaining in the office” and that it would notify the South about practical matters later. Seoul’s Vice Unification Minister Chun Hae-sung told reporters that South Korea plans to continue to staff the Kaesong liaison office normally and that it expects the North will continue to allow the South Koreans to commute to the office. He said Seoul plans to staff the office with 25 people on Saturday and Sunday.
The South Korean statement calls the North’s decision “regrettable.” It said South Korea urges the North to return its staff to the liaison office soon.
The liaison office opened last September as part of a flurry of reconciliation steps. It is the first such Korean office since the peninsula was split into a US-backed, capitalistic South and a Soviet-supported, socialist North in 1945. The Koreas had previously used telephone and fax-like communication channels that were often shut down in times of high tension.
The town is where the Korea’s now-stalled jointly run factory complex was located. It combined South Korean initiatives, capital and technology with North Korea’s cheap labor. Both Koreas want the US to allow sanctions exemptions to allow the reopening of the factory park, which provided the North with much-needed foreign currency.