BEIRUT

Middle East

Israel to join 2013 NATO activities: report

  • NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen addresses a news conference in Brussels May 11, 2012. REUTERS

BEIRUT: Israel will be participating in NATO activities in 2013 despite opposition from Turkey, according to a report Saturday by the Jerusalem Post.

Officials told the conservative Israeli daily that the approval was granted after Turkey’s request to station NATO Patriot missile batteries along the border with Syria.

They believed this was being used as leverage to encourage Ankara to improve ties with Tel Aviv, which have deteriorated over the past several years, particularly with the 2010 Israeli raid on a flotilla off the coast of Gaza killing nine Turkish citizens.

Turkey, which has been a full NATO member since 1952, has been opposed to Israeli participation in the organization’s military activities.

Until now, Israel, considered a NATO “partner,” has participated in NATO seminars, exercises and training.

But Turkey has objected to further participation, officials told the Post.

Any of NATO’s 28 full members can veto a proposal.

Turkey’s recent request for the Patriot missile systems would include Israeli participation, whose timing could be noteworthy.

“At the last minute – and I think it was dependent on the Patriots – it was approved,” an Israeli official told the Israeli daily on condition of anonymity.

Unidentified Turkish diplomatic sources told the Post that “Turkey’s position did not change on this matter.”

Meanwhile, the Israeli official said the new participation in NATO activities “is not a total solution” to the strained relations between the two countries.

 
Advertisement

Comments

Your feedback is important to us!

We invite all our readers to share with us their views and comments about this article.

Disclaimer: Comments submitted by third parties on this site are the sole responsibility of the individual(s) whose content is submitted. The Daily Star accepts no responsibility for the content of comment(s), including, without limitation, any error, omission or inaccuracy therein. Please note that your email address will NOT appear on the site.

comments powered by Disqus

Advertisement

FOLLOW THIS ARTICLE

Interested in knowing more about this story?

Click here