The official visit of the Minister of National Defence, Mr. Nikolaos Panagiotopoulos, to Israel ended today, Thursday, 16 January 2020.
On the second day of his visit, Mr. Panagiotopoulos had talks with his counterpart, Mr. Naftali Bennett, on a number of issues. During the meeting, special reference was made to the strong links that have been developed between these two countries in recent years, as well as the wide-ranging cooperation that has been achieved in the field of Defence, while the willingness of Greece and Israel to further strengthen their cooperation in the defence sector was confirmed. Moreover, matters relating to armaments and current issues of cooperation in the defence – technical sector were also discussed.
Both Ministers referred to the added value of the multi-level tripartite cooperation between Greece, Cyprus and Israel and its contribution to the creation of security and stability in the Southeastern Mediterranean Sea.
During the meeting, views were exchanged in respect of the security and stability challenges in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea and Middle East, as well as on the ways for responding effectively to them.
Then, the Minister of National Defence had successive meetings with representatives of the International Defence Cooperation Directorate of the Israeli Ministry of Defence (SIBAT) and the Directorate of Defence Research and Development (MAFAT).
After the meeting of Messrs. Panagiotopoulos and Bennett at the Israeli Ministry of Defence, the Minister of National Defence made the following statement:
“My official two-day visit to Israel has just ended and this afternoon, I had the chance to meet with my counterpart, the Minister of Defence of Israel, Mr. Naftali Bennett, with whom we discussed about the close strategic relationship between the two countries and the ways for achieving its further strengthening and deepening.
Furthermore, I had the opportunity of meeting members of the very strong Defence Industry of Israel and discussing on the possibilities for further development in the relations between the Israeli and the Greek Defence Industry at this very interesting geopolitical juncture.
The potential for development of cooperations, synergies, even joint-manufacturing schemes between the Greek and Israeli features of Defence Industry is indeed huge.
Finally, I had also the opportunity of visiting the facilities of the Israeli Airspace Industry, where I was informed about the “Heron” Unmanned Vehicle, procured by the Hellenic Armed Forces, so that it would become an active part of their structures and I also had the opportunity of witnessing the extremely advanced and developed Israeli Industry in terms of Unmanned Vehicles, which I am sure you understand that it is of interest to us and is considered to be our strategic goal as well in the domestic Defence Industry”.